Monday evening, the lovely pasta and Greek salad that I demolished for dinner has settled nicely, aided no doubt by several glasses of a fine cheap dry cider from Llidl called Woodgate http://www.ratebeer.com/beer/woodgate-dry-cider/215179/ . Which at £1.99 for two litres has to be the bargain of the summer, just wish I was drinking it at home with the wife and not here in my mates flat in Gourock.
Having said that it’s been far nicer than any hotel, giving me the freedom to eat several groves worth of olives, a crop of chilli peppers, a few goats worth of feta cheese and a whole shoal of anchovies. Not to mention half a pigs worth of salamis from Naples, Rome, Milan and Bologna, I’m not comfortable in a town but I have enjoyed the grub
At home I’m 100 miles from a Tesco, Morrison’s, Asda or Llidl and here I drive past several on the way to work, back on Raasay a Screwfix order is a week away whilst here it’s open from 7:00am until 8:00pm. Here I see more people pass by my window in an hour than I’d see at Arnish in a lifetime and wherever I look on this dark night I see a myriad of lights. Back home I cannot see one single man made light from my house and hear only the wind or roar of a rutting stag, Gourock offers me the ceaseless roar of traffic and a train every half hour, the contrast could not be greater. Still, I’ve enjoyed it, I’m getting paid, the weather has been great, I’m back on shift and I’ll be heading north tomorrow, not actually home but at least as far as my parents.
Not only that but I’ve had the privilege of seeing the worlds first sea going Ro Ro hybrid ferry http://www.cmassets.co.uk/en/our-work/projects/current-projects/hybrid-ferries-project.html come together in its final stages.
She may be a little behind schedule, but much of that is due to extra ‘hoops’ that the builders have had to jump through to satisfy Lloyds and the MCA, not a bad thing for they only have the safety of the public in mind. One thing for sure, by the time the MV Hallaig does arrive on Raasay, she will be the safest, quietest, cleanest and most economical vessel in her class.
The ‘broken wall from Donegal’
Today, no doubt because it was my penultimate day at Ferguson’s, I was up early and managed to catch a glimpse of the
‘Saga Sapphire’ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MS_Saga_Sapphire heading up the Clyde from my window. OK, not my window but my mates
and she was escorted by the tug Anglegarth.
She went to ‘Ocean Terminal Greenock’ and I went to Ferguson’s at Port Glasgow, the last shipbuilder on the lower Clyde.
I’d left the yard quite late on Sunday, but the workers there had obviously left even later for deck 4 had been painted in my absence.
The car deck was also getting serious preparation with all unnecessary equipment getting craned off.
Much of my day was spent assisting the yard in doing some work on the cooling system for the forward drive cabinet.
This will be the fresh water system that cools all the electronics for the electric motors that drive the ferry, a completely sealed and pressurised system that is cooled by another fresh water system that is cooled by sea water.
As well as that there was work done on the sewage plant, fire alarms, Novec system and much more painting and insulation. I also arrived ‘home’ just as the ‘Saga Sapphire’ had had enough of Greenock, a bit like me I suppose
The ‘broken wall from Donegal’
Just like the inadequate exit from the new ferry terminal at Sconser was pointed out to the council clowns, so was the inadequate entrance.
Of course the ‘council clowns’ took no heed when it was pointed out to them that lorries would struggle to turn into the car park, and this is the result. Less than a month after the place was opened, the ‘wall from Donegal’ has been demolished by an incoming truck And just as every resident from Raasay prophesised the car park is too small,
a plague of locusts in the form of 12 cars with kayak racks and several vans jammed it up for the bank holiday weekend