Life at the end of the road

December 12, 2010

Here goes :-)

Filed under: daily doings — lifeattheendoftheroad @ 10:22 pm

It’s been a while I know so it will probably be a little disjointed but I’ve been ‘tired and shagged out after a long squawk’ as the great JC would say.




Ever since arriving home frazzled on Wednesday evening I’ve been disappearing up my backside so to speak. The mountain of tasks that got postponed due to the ‘big freeze’ prior to me heading south to the annual refit still needed doing. The jobs that had piled up as a result, burst pipes, frozen water inlet and bedding cutting to name a few had to be dealt with before I could even begin this weeks ‘to do’ list.

Even with a daunting week ahead though it was a pure joy to arrive home to wife, child and a very fat ‘wee dug’,


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Molly starts her eighth week of gestation tomorrow so could ‘drop her load’ any time, at least that what I’m told 🙂 Quite what we should call the offspring from the union of a Jack Russell and Patterdale cross Yorkshire terrier I’m not sure but ‘Jack Yordale’ and ‘Russell Pattershire’s’ spring to mind. I’m told by one who knows that if you can think of a great name for any mongrel it’s worth a fortune, you only have to look at a ‘Labradoodle’ to see what I mean 🙂 Anyway, before I’m inundated with offers of megabucks for this new ‘Raasay terrier’ they’re all spoken for 🙂

Molly was not the only one that had put on weight in my absence, ‘Wee Bee’ had also filled out and is now more of a pig than a person.

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That’s her in the gloom, Mildred is in the foreground, and whilst she does occasionally follow me about she now seems to prefer the company of her own kind. Having said that she came charging up to meet me when I arrived home and brought her new pal into the garden and almost into the house. It was probably more my bags full of groceries than me she was after but it was great to see her 🙂

HMS St Christopher

I meant to squeeze this into my last post but a beckoning duvet and good slug of rum prevented my eyes from staying open. HMS St Christopher was not a ship, or at least this one wasn’t, it was the name of the Royal Navy’s base at Fort William in WW2. and it’s well worth a look at Martin’s site if you’re interested in the wartime history of Fort William and the west coast, many of the remnants still being visible today. The largest of which are the old workshops and indoor shooting range at Corpach,

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most of which are still in use today.


This is an image lifted from and shows the inside of that building with the huge water tank on the roof. This I believe was the old torpedo workshop and still contains the gantry for lifting them. My detour to Corpach ( and the reason for almost missing the ferry ) was to collect feed from Harbro though this image was taken in 2007 and they no longer use the facility.

Back to Raasay

Anyway back home and the priority was water, wifey had made a fine job of repairing the burst outside tap but it had almost emptied our 5000lt tanks before she’d managed to do it.

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With an old split washer she cut a little chunk out of the original washer and bound it with copper wire before refitting it, not 100% but enough to reduce the flow to a steady drip, I was most impressed 🙂 However with the tanks now empty I fitted a new tap and cleaned them out with a very mild solution of bleach, something I usually do in the summer when we run out of water 🙂


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Next it was to cut just enough bedding to clean out all the pig arcs, it was still a little damp but would do until I could get on the case in earnest over the next few days of impending warm dry weather.

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It may not have been bone dry but Bramble really appreciated it and her six wee gilts wasted no time in helping her ‘sort it’


I’m sure I did much more on Thursday but I can’t remember what, despite the dramatic thaw it was still way too icy at Glame to risk taking my boy to school or retrieving wifey’s Daihatsu from the village. With the temperature never dropping below 7 degrees during the night however we gave it a shot on Friday, and much to his dismay made it, it was actually harder going on the wet ice than deep snow 😦 Still impassable for wifey’s 4×4 so the days precious daylight hours were eaten into by two trips south, though each journey saw less and less snow. 


The arrival of Saturday saw a dramatic improvement in the road as regards snow and ice so as well as the swineherds car we picked up two more of the boys pals, having already acquired one on Friday. These willing helpers would go a long way towards offsetting the lack of work done on previous days 🙂

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The snow and ice may have gone but just look at the destruction it left in its wake 😦

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Still it meant we could at last return some serious fencing work at the new shed site

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where we managed to get a couple more strainers into the ground.

A ‘defibrillator’ for Raasay

Feeling very pleased with ourselves we called it a day and went down to the Raasay primary school for a training course in CPR and how to use the new defibrillator that will be kept at the Raasay fire station. It was an excellent  course run by Roger the coastguard, Helen and Mairi from Portree and of course ‘little and baby Ann’ the rubber dummies 🙂 Well attended by members of the local community we all left feeling confident and with a certificate 🙂


Today was a lovely day and we wasted no time in getting ‘stuck in’

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clearing ‘scrub birch’ around the shed site and lifting several good trailer loads of firewood in the process.


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‘Lighting MacLennan’ demonstrating his skills at quad biking over some very tricky terrain before we headed off for a marathon bedding cutting session.

With a huge pile of bedding airing in the barn and the pigs fed we settled down to a nice leg of Soay lamb for dinner before preparing for tomorrow’s trip to with Eddy and Mildred. Paperwork filled in, trailer loaded with fresh bedding and freezer boxes loaded ready for the Christmas shop we called it a day. It will be an early start and long day so now I’m off to bed 🙂


  1. good that your wife managed with the burst pipes and that the snow has gone. Wee molly is looking so good and hopefully the delivery will be a smooth one. Nice to see you have always willing helpers but seeing your son driving the quad sends shivers down my spine. The photos are lovely as always. Are you back at work this week?

    Comment by taddoe — December 13, 2010 @ 6:54 am

    • Work tomorrow Taddoe,

      can’t wait, honest 🙂

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — December 14, 2010 @ 11:01 pm

  2. Hi, Paul

    I reckon ‘Raasay Terrier’ should be the breed name – sounds good and is spot on in terms of an accurate description. They are both terriers and it ‘happened’ on Raasay!

    I would love to have driven a quad cycle when young (or even now, when quite old). Your boy is a lucky lad to have the life and opportunities he has, let alone that wonderful school. Hope Portree is as good for him as Raasay School.



    Comment by Sue Styles — December 13, 2010 @ 7:18 pm

    • Hi Sue,

      think that Andy and Jane have it, can’t make my mind up between Patterjacks or Japatties 🙂 🙂 🙂 Think that the Raasay school is a hard act to follow 🙂

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — December 14, 2010 @ 11:05 pm

  3. Hi Paul –
    Sorry about this but being terrier owners had to have a bash at the naming. Here goes – 1. Pjorkshire Terriers 2. Patterjacks or 3. Japatties.
    Regards, Andy

    Comment by Andy — December 13, 2010 @ 10:13 pm

    • To say that wifey and I were ‘in stitches’ Andy would be putting in mildly 🙂

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — December 14, 2010 @ 11:06 pm

  4. Dog names — LOL!!
    That bit of road is well and truly knackered, with a capital F!

    Comment by Mike — December 14, 2010 @ 11:50 am

    • Hi Mike,

      pricless names hey 🙂 as for the road, what can I say 😦

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — December 14, 2010 @ 11:07 pm

  5. Hi Paul, nowt to do with your post but i thought you may be interested. A work colleague has been doing family tree and it transpires that her great granny was Janet Mackenzie (hope thats right!) from Rona. She was the lady who had the lamp in the window waiting for her husband and sons to come home. Lil hopes to visit Rona next year to see the cottage. Am i right in thinking its been turned into a holiday cottage?

    Comment by corinne — December 15, 2010 @ 9:33 pm

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