Life at the end of the road

February 8, 2012

Sailors warning, yes really :-)

Filed under: daily doings, weather — lifeattheendoftheroad @ 10:12 pm

It’s heading for 22:00, I’m not long in, having just had my bath and about to crawl into bed. It’s been a long and much windier day than forecast, I’ve been working late, we lost two more piglets and I’m shattered.

The day started well, with a feeling of satisfaction that comes with a good week of work on and around the croft behind me. It was the first day back at work and I was actually looking forward to a week on the ferry, much as I love my home and isolation it would be good to see some familiar faces and speak to someone other than the wife, boy and people trying to screw money out of me on the phone 🙂

However on checking our recently farrowed sow I saw that numbers were down from nine to seven 😦 Two more squashed during the night 😦

Anyway that’s life and there’s not a great deal we can do about it, she’s just not a great mother and there’s no changing that 😦 Jamie Lea who is far larger and much less graceful is a great deal more careful when lying down.

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The day started off with a right ‘red sky in morning, sailors warning’

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and it certainly proved correct.

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For by the time we got to Sconser it was gusting to 60knots !!!

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The return journey being somewhat faster with the wind and tide ‘up our ar5e’ so to speak 🙂


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Still at least, thanks to our new harbour we had a sheltered berth to return to, can you believe that some people thought that we didn’t need one !!!

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Sorry that’s it, we missed the next couple of runs, sailed at 12:15 only to be greeted by the ‘mother of all squalls’ at Sconer and then tied up until 17:30 when it eased enough to run.



  1. Bloody hell paul, that looked scary. the shots of the sunrise are outstanding. god rest the wee piglets souls, we know pigs are inteligent but it seems like humans we do have special needs individuals, BLESS

    Comment by steve — February 8, 2012 @ 10:32 pm

  2. Thats a big swell, Paul. I’m impressed that you ran at all. Saly Traffic on Radio 2 was saying today that CalMac had severe disruptions to their normal sailings, and I wonderred then if you would get off Scott -Free. 🙂

    Comment by Lloyd — February 8, 2012 @ 11:12 pm

  3. Wow these are some photos! I love them. Sorry about the piglets, an awful disappointment after so long. Hope the weather goes away. Funnily enough, no wind here in Edinburgh.

    Comment by may cruickshank — February 8, 2012 @ 11:26 pm

  4. Stunning sunrise, pink on the waves. Wow.
    Sorry about the piglets!

    Comment by Flora — February 9, 2012 @ 12:15 am

  5. I love those high seas, i remember the sounds of a storm at sea! (mostly the sound of me being sick) .. c

    Comment by ceciliag — February 9, 2012 @ 12:36 am

  6. Morning, Paul – from a very frosty bacup with snow still lying on the ground from least Saturday’s fall

    That new harbour is certainly a blessing. I’ve seen the ferry tied up at the old pier and not sailing in lesser swells than that. How do you think the new ferry will perform in high seas? It’s bigger than the MV Striven (and much bigger than the MV Raasay, where water came over the deck sides even in fairly ordinary seas), but that isn’t everything.

    Hope the rest of the piglets flourish


    Comment by Sue — February 9, 2012 @ 7:40 am

    • Morning Sue, great single malt thanks 🙂 piglets still @ seven so that’s good as seven are already sold 🙂

      Cheers, paul

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — February 11, 2012 @ 6:15 am

  7. Out of the pan into the fire, Paul you do have a well rounded life. Good job you have that sheltered berth. One summer many years ago I worked at a pig farm and the thing that use to upset me in the morning was finding of dead piglets, something’s don’t change.

    Comment by Polite Scouser — February 9, 2012 @ 9:22 am

    • Morning Walter, glad you’re still keeping up 🙂

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — February 11, 2012 @ 6:18 am

      • Your in the top of my blog reading list .Walter

        Comment by Polite Scouser — February 11, 2012 @ 9:18 am

  8. Lucky guy! I suppose in order to paint all you had to do was hold the roller and watch the ship go up and down under it!

    Comment by drgeo — February 9, 2012 @ 4:41 pm

  9. I notice lots of discussions about gilts crushing piglets on Google, so you are not alone: here’s a link

    Because you like to tinker, here is an interesting gadget to prevent piglet crushing:
    Perhaps just providing piglets with a heating pad would keep them away from snuggling under mom for warmth?
    Nobody on Google seems to have the definitive answer.

    Comment by drgeo — February 9, 2012 @ 5:01 pm

    • Thanks for the links DrGeo, though I had read some, our problem is actually stopping them bringing in bedding, even if you take it out the drag more in 😦 On the whole it’s not too bad with the other sows, it’s just that Bracken always seems to have a hard time giving birth 😦

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — February 11, 2012 @ 6:21 am

  10. Paul.
    Awkward sow, greedy bonhams and bedding a disaster waiting to happen. We had pens 2400 x 2400 with two rows of 50mm galv tubes 700mm apart in the middle. Door at each end to let the sow in and out. Red light in a corner keeps the little lads out of harm’s way for five or six days. After six days the tubes can be removed, or not. Pig rearing is an expensive hobby even getting all of the litter on a trailer at eight weeks.
    Keep it country,

    Comment by Michael Leonard — February 9, 2012 @ 7:35 pm

    • Morning Michael, we had considered rails and heat lamps but it’s just not practical for our free range and off grid regime. We also considered wood chips instead of bedding but the sows just go out and collect it 😦

      rushes and pig

      believe it or not there’s a pig and litter under there 🙂

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — February 12, 2012 @ 7:55 am

  11. I was always amazed how localized some of the storms could be at Sconser and Clachan.A few miles either side of Sconser and conditions could be ten times calmer.Shame about the piglets.


    Comment by Andy — February 9, 2012 @ 10:10 pm

    • Aye Andy, it can be a different day here to the south end of the island too, especially with south or north wind. With a wet southerly we quite often miss it and with a cool northerly in the spring or summer we’re quite often shrouded in a cold mist whilst Inverarish is bathed in sunshine 🙂

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — February 12, 2012 @ 7:58 am

      • Know what you mean about the cold summer mists.We drove into one between Applecross and the beach at Sand once.Went from a warm sunny day to a cold autumn-like day in the length of a car 😦

        Comment by Andy — February 12, 2012 @ 10:05 am

      • Morning Andy, going anywhere for half term?? weather’s lovely here 🙂

        Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — February 13, 2012 @ 5:51 am

  12. We were planning to visit family near Fort William but my wifes uncle passed away recently so had to cancel.I can remember this half term 2008 up at Applecross.Very mild at around 16C!

    Comment by Andy — February 13, 2012 @ 9:20 am

    • Sorry to here about wifey’s loss Andy, sure you’ll be back soon.

      Take care Paul and all

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — February 14, 2012 @ 6:32 am

  13. like the photos of the wild weather at the pier, brings back memories of trying to pour concrete in that kinda weather 🙂

    Comment by jimmy mcmillan — February 14, 2012 @ 3:06 pm

    • Morning Jimmy, talking of wild weather I was just looking at the videos that you took with your phone three years ago on one of those days 🙂 Must try and upload it to YouTube.

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — February 17, 2012 @ 6:25 am

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