Hopefully this will be my penultimate week on the deck of the MV Hebrides, I say hopefully because my counting is rubbish and I wouldn’t be the first motorman to miscount his ‘sea time’. A good friend of mine who shall remain nameless was suddenly hit with the realization that he’d a couple of extra weeks to do due to a counting error. Fingers crossed though and I’ll have my sixty days notched up by this time next week, which will leave me just twenty five to do in the engine room. The engine room is a fine place to be in January, not so attractive in July though, still, at least I know what I’m doing down there
It was a fine enough day yesterday in between the odd bank of fog but Wednesday is a bunkering day in Uig so we don’t tie up in Lochmaddy until 21:00 and the internet is pants there at the best of times. Last night it was abysmal and an early night seemed in order after the busy day of painting and directing traffic.
Don’t let my mate’s expression fool you, for he is truly happy at is work
The Minch was quite busy, probably no more than usual right enough but the good weather just makes all the traffic more photogenic. This being the Fraserburgh registered trawler ‘Star O Buchan’ FR 116 somewhere off Idrigill point.
The Castlebay registered catamaran ‘Harmony’ CY 777 just east of Weavers point North Uist, a very capable looking craft indeed.
That’s actually her just off the starboard bow as we approached Lochmaddy in the afternoon.
It was a little overcast there to say the least
unlike Skye and the Ascrib Islands just a few miles to the east.
Or even Harris a little later on as the SC Astrea passed by with a cargo of wind turbines,
you can just see the Scalpay light astern of her as she passes by ahead of us.
I can’t say that this morning looked very promising in Lochmaddy at 6:00am
but it got better by the minute
and by 7:00 it looked every bit as promising as it turned out to be.
Though the odd bank of fog did persist in the Minch
and clung to some of the valleys and hills of Harris
It was a busy enough day on the deck too with lots of holiday traffic and the ‘usual suspects’ in their hard working trucks.
This one being no stranger to Raasay and indeed Arnish,
for it was himself that delivered the blocks for our new house. Imagine that MacAulay blocks http://www.askernishquarry.com/index.htm from North Uist in our new house on Raasay
Other traffic of a nautical nature included,
Loch Duart Salmon’s Lady Catherine alongside Uig pier at 18:00,
the Portree trawler ‘Catriona’ BRD 180
and the self discharging bulk carrier Yeoman Bontrup.
She suffered a major fire three years ago exactly at the Glensanda quarry http://forargyll.com/2012/04/yeoman-bontrup-the-fire-and-the-recovery/
and had a £37 million refit in Gdansk http://remontowa-mdc.pl/title,Bulk_carrier_Yeoman_Bontrup_%28REBUILDING%29,pid,162.html . Coincidently the same yard that built the Finlaggan for around £25 million, so you can imagine how extensive the damage was.