Life at the end of the road

June 16, 2013

A day early

Filed under: Croft house for sale, daily doings, harbour, life off grid — Tags: , , — lifeattheendoftheroad @ 10:13 pm

I know that it’s not ‘Fathers day’ until tomorrow but my pop has dementia so a day here or there doesn’t make a great deal of difference so I figured we’d go and visit him today. Two reasons really, firstly we could spend longer with him and secondly the forecast was better for Sunday. Not only that but I can now look forward to my son spoiling me tomorrow, aye that’ll be right Smile  So, after a very early rise and an hour or two plonking away on here we headed for the ferry minus the ‘wee dug’. Not that the ‘wee dug’ wanted to stay at home but she’s a friggin nightmare in the car and we couldn’t be bothered with her incessant whining. For reasons unclear she’s fine with me in the Land Rover  Well the day turned out first class in the end with the predicted showers amounting to no more than a few dots on the windscreen, probably just enough to ruin a coat of paint Sad smile

So much for that then

It’ll be Fathers day now, yours truly ‘fell asleep at the wheel’ last night so to speak and turned in before managing to write any more rubbish. Anyway, back to my fathers day at the Kintail Lodge Hotel yesterday.



Well, it was obviously good enough for Brad Smile


and Lucy Smile Seriously though the food was fabulous with steak pie, haddock, scampi for the family and for me a fish pie for me. After that was all washed down and my parents delivered safely back home we headed for Sconser and the 16:15 ferry.


This wee fish farm craft called the Stolt Madadh was swinging at her mooring in Loch Sligachan and I’m a little puzzled as to the purpose of that huge stainless steel exhaust up forward ?


Sat ready and awaiting fitment to the pier were these fenders from China!!!! Me thinks that a more local solution would have been more appropriate, surely it can’t be that difficult to knock something up out of plant tyres, chain and RSJ’s nearer to home?? Makes more sense than the council recycling all the bean tins to China to come back here as the steel for the Forth Road bridge. The world has gone mad !!!!


Anyway, after the lunchtime feast a light snack of homemade bread with highly illegal homemade salami and a glass of wine from Italy seemed appropriate. In fact, it’s 21:30 now and I think I’ll just have another couple of slices of that fine mouldy offering that just six months ago was running about the hill here. The next six months being spent hanging in my mates shed Smile

  190211 011

Feeling refreshed by the salami and red wine from Puglia I decided to go out for a wander with the boy. It was that time of Saturday night that’s infested with all that pish that makes my skin crawl, BGT, Strictly whatever or The Voice, Simon Cowell, Brucie and Tom, I can’t stand any of them, and fortunately neither can the Dude. He’d gone outside to get away from some moron on the box so I left the laptop behind, we grabbed a firearm each and went wandering the hill.

 018 019

Twenty four years I’ve lived here yet still I find things that I’ve never seen before, this being an old tiny enclosure, probably used to separate lambs in years gone by.


It’s well after 22:30 by this time and probably dark in London,


as my son said, that tree could be in Africa, why would anyone choose to live in London Smile



You certainly couldn’t do this at 8:00am in Piccadilly Smile for that was my first job today after a leisurely ‘lie in’ on Fathers day proper.

Fitting solar panel mounts

The second job was to fit the battens to the roof for the new solar panels,


this I did, after much measuring, re measuring and measuring again. I used 125mm decking screws through the wooden rails with a corrugated iron screw washer underneath. In all honesty the washer was probably a little OTT as the wood would have sealed nicely on the roof anyway, but I had them, so used them.


That was the first two up before breakfast


and that really is two eggs Smile


True grit

With the home grown sausages and eggs demolished we all set off for Grian a Sgeir (the sunny reef) west of Fladda. The hens were needing grit and this place has the finest on Raasay, well at high tide it does, there’s another spot near the harbour but that’s only accessible at low springs.



A fantastic little group of rocks, reefs and a tiny island it’s the home to geese, gulls, terns, oystercatchers, shags and seals.


009 010

It was also where lambs would be put ashore to graze for the latter weeks prior to going away.



We however were there for the fine shell and coral sand that is an essential part of the hens diet.


There’s also some pretty amazing lichens, mosses and plants there




and someone, in days gone by has taken the time to pile up some stones Smile



We were probably only there for half an hour before carrying our bags and buckets to a suitable spot for loading onto the boat but it was long enough as there was much to do at home.


016 018

So after taking our 150kg of ‘grit’ home and finishing my roof mounts I bashed on with preparing for work Sad smile Clearing all my tools away, getting another coat of paint on part of the roof, putting Lachie’s ladders back up to the new house site and packing my bag. I also took advantage of the ups and downs of the battery voltage to check the LED lights on my Morningstar controller.


Though, as my system is 48v the values are thus,

Red = 0 – 48v

Yellow and red = 48 – 50.6

Yellow = 50.6 – 52

Green and yellow = 52 – 52.6

Green = 52.6 to PWM, which I have set at 59.2v

017  019


Pretty boring I know but as wifey went through here washing and drying cycles I kept an eye on the voltages and LED lights, sad I know but they functioned perfectly compared to the voltmeter readings, though the voltage never got up to ‘diversion mode’ at 59.2. That will have to wait until either a gale of wind or t he fitting of the solar panels.


Here’s another way of expressing the light values, as SOC or state of charge.



  1. why would anyone choose to live in London? … because it’s where my type of work is … I’m retiring soon and thinking of evacuating

    Comment by cazinatutu — June 16, 2013 @ 10:25 pm

    • Well Caz I suppose if you’ve no choice, but sounds like you’re not thrilled with it 🙂

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — June 17, 2013 @ 4:15 am

  2. Your pig was having a snack near a yield sign…has the pig washed away from the sign and left nothing but spots? Or is one supposed to yield to rhododendrons these days? It was a fine vacation while it lasted, sigh.

    Comment by drgeo — June 16, 2013 @ 10:50 pm

    • Some swine tried to steal the pig off the sign DrG 😦

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — June 17, 2013 @ 4:12 am

      • Apparently the Sconser crew is not up to date on their terrorist training– and allowing the smuggling of pig pictures from yield signs! This calls for strip searches of all tourists! Can the Dude stencil a pig?

        Comment by drgeo — June 17, 2013 @ 7:31 pm

  3. Don’t blame you for wanting away from the smoke caz, once went to London when I was a boy of thirteen. Couldn’t stand it then, so gawd knows what it’s like now.

    Comment by The Peoples Republic of Northumbria — June 17, 2013 @ 12:33 am

    • Morning Steve,

      I went for a week, managed two days then came home, felt a bit like Crocodile Dundee, no one would even look at you let alone speak to you.

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — June 17, 2013 @ 4:11 am

  4. Great to visit for about a day then get back to the real world, your world sounds fantastic apart from the flying teeth! foul little brutes!! I think I will wait until A/ the caravans have gone back to Englandshire and B/ the Midgies have gone away for the winter before venturing up : )

    Comment by v8mbov — June 17, 2013 @ 9:04 am

  5. London is great to visit for a day that is !!!

    Comment by v8mbov — June 17, 2013 @ 9:04 am

  6. btw the exhaust may not be a as big as it looks, the lower part may be a heat shield rather than a silencer

    Comment by v8mbov — June 17, 2013 @ 11:20 am

  7. London’s not really all that bad … I came 30 years ago because it was where the work was and I could make a life … I stayed unwillingly at first but came to realise its advantages mainly around being able as a single mum to make a successful life, and the opportunities for the kids (who’ve all done well), and I came to enjoy it … I hardly ever go down town so don’t really see the rat race, and I work just 10 minutes from where I live … where I am (in the middle suburbs) it’s not that much different from living in any town … we have loads of open space around here in north London – parks, original woodland etc – so it’s not at all claustrophobic … through my work I meet loads of local people and it’s hard to walk down the main shopping street without bumping into people I know … what’s changing my mind lately is that I’ll be finishing work in a few weeks and I’m not very mobile now, so maybe it’s time to think about going somewhere smaller … that’s not a problem as I have a standing invitation to join a friend in north Wales so I might just take that up, if not permanently then for spells of time

    so come on guys, stop bashing something you don’t really know … one or two days as a tourist in the centre of London is not experiencing the “real” London

    Comment by cazinatutu — June 17, 2013 @ 9:15 pm

    • London’s not really all that bad 🙂 🙂 it is if you find Inverness claustrophobic and at least there people will look you in the eye. I’m sure it’s just fine if you like being anonymous, don’t mind having to lock everything up and can cope with the traffic. Me I get flustered in Portree where there aren’t even any traffic lights. I just don’t like towns or cities and I’ve visited and worked in a few, London however seemed to be unfriendlier than most, at least that’s what I found.

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — June 18, 2013 @ 5:22 am

  8. “don’t mind having to lock everything up” … you have to do that anyway, Paul, otherwise your insurance claim is invalid … for the record a few times the front door was accidentally left unlocked, and a couple of times I forgot to lock the car and nothing at all untoward happened … I keep up my routine of locking cars etc even when I’m in areas like yours mainly so I don’t get out of the habit

    yes, I don’t mind being reasonably anonymous … I got fed up as a kid in a small village with every tom dick and harry knowing your business (having a neurotic mother didn’t help)

    Comment by cazinatutu — June 18, 2013 @ 4:53 pm

    • I got fed up as a kid in a small village with every tom dick and harry knowing your business

      Good job I didn’t or you’d have nowt to read 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — June 18, 2013 @ 7:19 pm

      • ahh, Paul, but you choose what to tell us, I often wonder what personal stuff you keep to yourself

        Comment by cazinatutu — June 18, 2013 @ 9:16 pm

      • I often wonder what personal stuff you keep to yourself

        That’s what living in London does to you, the only stuff I miss out is ‘swabbing my jobbies’ for bowl cancer screening, but I figured you’d not want to know about that anyway 🙂 🙂

        Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — June 18, 2013 @ 9:35 pm

      • omg, DON’T Paul … it’s so gross I dodged the last packet that arrived

        Comment by cazinatutu — June 18, 2013 @ 10:02 pm

      • it’s so gross I dodged the last packet that arrived

        So did I Caz but my wife fished it out of the bin and insisted I take it to work with me and do it there 🙂 🙂

        Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — June 18, 2013 @ 10:14 pm

  9. Any news on the new hoose Paul?

    Comment by Lloyd — June 18, 2013 @ 4:59 pm

    • We’ve run out of money, need someone to buy the house 🙂 No seriously, Lachie has had other commitments and will be back on the case shortly.

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — June 18, 2013 @ 8:57 pm

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