Life at the end of the road

May 29, 2013

Shades of summer :-)

Filed under: boats, daily doings, Trucks and plant — Tags: , — lifeattheendoftheroad @ 8:09 pm

WOO HOO, I’m on holiday, well almost, I will be this time tomorrow for a full two weeks, and boy do I have a long ‘to do’ list.  It came as a bit of a surprise really and I’m certainly needing it, not a holiday as such that is but some time at home to catch up. Drains to clear, rushes to cut, house to paint, and that’s before I even start on the new house tasks of preparing the generator shed, building a ‘slow sand filter’ and moving the caravan from Tarbert.

It’s unlikely that I’ll get half of what I want done finished but it’ll be great to spend two full days in a row with wife, child, dog and some wine Smile It will make a pleasant change from plying the Minch in the good ship MV Hebrides, though I have to say I’ll miss the ‘craic’. Not that I can understand that much of it anyway due to a combination of deafness on my part and the international dialects of the crew. Well from as far afield as Liverpool, South Shields, Grimsby and Lewis at least Smile Added to that would be the fact that half the crew are less than half my age and speak a different language so all in all it’s a miracle I can communicate with them at all Smile However they all seem to tolerate the ‘old greenhorn’ from the wee boats and keep me right when I cock things up Smile

 Last night

Anyways before the euphoria of being given a holiday, before I went to bed last night in fact, I went for a wee wander around Tarbert. It was after 21:30 when I wandered down the gangplank and headed westwards towards the setting sun and I guess the Atlantic ocean.



The Hebrides resting for the night with her mouth open to enable maintenance to be carried out.


I’m thinking this lovely stone building will be the primary school, I see that the Western Isles Council have the good sense to mount their wind turbines well away from the school.



The new school over the road has a very impressive 280 tube solar hot water array, that would I’m sure go a long way to supplying all their hot water between April and October. Well it would if it actually had any water in it, four of the tubes were broken and it looked like the system had been ‘drained down’. The Western Isles Council may have been savvy in mounting their wind turbines out of the way but the sanity of mounting all these shiny glass tubes a few feet off the ground and out of sight escapes me. They might as well have put a sign on saying ‘break me’.



Well, it was certainly worth the walk to West Loch Tarbert to see the sunset, not that the sun was actually visible from the head of the loch but it did look lovely.


A magnificent day greeted us this morning and had the entire crew out chipping and painting various parts of the vessel.


It also saw an abundance of ‘shades’ appear on the crew Smile


Between the traffic and the painting the day flew by, no doubt assisted by the phone call informing me of two weeks holiday commencing on Monday. Though with weather like this everyone is on good form, work is a pleasure and the customers happy, so long may it continue.

The hour or so that we lie in Uig at 18:00 was utilized to do an FRC launch,


this time without shades Smile



It’s a long way down.



The engine is fired up


and off she goes.


That was it really, I was on my rest period so wandered up to the ‘Old Girl’ with some of my belongings to lighten the load tomorrow and now we’re just about to berth at Lochmaddy.



Here’s one of Harry Lawson’s tankers, Volvo SP13BKN awaiting the ferry to North Uist,


and this will be the crew, or at least part of them, that will take it there and feed the driver, spot the Raasay man Smile


  1. Enjoy your leave Paul

    Comment by Ronnie — May 29, 2013 @ 9:20 pm

  2. Well, they say a change is as good as a rest so no doubt you’ll find the croft work very restful! Hope you enjoy your break.
    Anne Macdonald

    Comment by Anne Macdonald — May 29, 2013 @ 9:49 pm

  3. Hooray for a surprise 2 weeks’ leave! Don’t you dare take 4 hours to relax and revive, you must frantically work 23 hours each day! And absolutely no cabernet either. And no rebellion.

    Comment by drgeo — May 29, 2013 @ 10:20 pm

  4. Here’s me just back to work and you’re getting two weeks off, lucky so and so. Mind you it could so easily have been a forced

    Comment by The Peoples Republic of Northumbria — May 29, 2013 @ 10:55 pm

    • Hope that was nothing to do with you leaving the gas switched on 🙂

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — June 2, 2013 @ 4:53 am

  5. “spot the Raasay man” … now is he the one with the hat perched at a rakish angle, or the one with the cool shades, or the shy one peeping round his mate on the left … the two in the front look like brothers (or twins?) … I’ll vote for the one with the hat (and probably find out he’s from South Shields!!)

    Comment by cazinatutu — May 30, 2013 @ 2:21 am

    • Tall dark one on the end Caz.

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — June 2, 2013 @ 4:53 am

  6. As a Broughty Ferry ‘born and bred’ boy…nice to see a couple of Harry’s Volvos on board. When I was “wee”, his garage was down by Broughty Castle and all the lorries used to be parked in the street! He moved to an industrial area later in life.

    Comment by Doug Miller — May 30, 2013 @ 7:23 am

  7. Paul,
    You seem to have had Thursday already and in Aberdeenshire it is only just starting, Is Raasay the other side of the international date line and a day ahead?

    Comment by Kev — May 30, 2013 @ 8:19 am

    • Hi Kev, I did miss out one day right enough but it was the Friday I had in bed 🙂

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — June 2, 2013 @ 4:54 am

  8. love love love my phonaks. it’s like getting my head out of a bucket of water. i got the black ones. but you could get the pink. or thr zebra. or the camo.

    Comment by jeannettesmyth — May 31, 2013 @ 4:08 am

    • looks interesting jeanette … did you have to buy them or did you get them on the NHS

      Comment by cazinatutu — June 2, 2013 @ 10:13 pm

  9. So will you be going back to working the Sconser – Rasaay route soon? Keep up the great posts

    Comment by tonylucas63 — May 31, 2013 @ 1:36 pm

    • Hi Tony good to here from you again, don’t see me being back to Sconser Raasay until September at the earliest now.

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — June 2, 2013 @ 4:58 am

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