Life at the end of the road

October 29, 2018

A green light :-)

Filed under: daily doings, food, Trucks and plant — Tags: , , — lifeattheendoftheroad @ 7:19 am

Well, that’s me body clock ‘topsy turvy’ for a few weeks now the clocks have changed, 5:30 now and the kettle is on but I’ve been lying awake for hours. Must confess though, part of that is the excitement of today’s big pour, there’s a lot of money getting poured into the sea today so I’m a little apprehensive to say the least. Having said that the portents are good, better than forecast or expected and everything has gone like clockwork really. Tide is good, weather is perfect, temperature just right, area prepared and the tools all ready. The only thing I haven’t done is consult my horoscope Smile but as soon as I’ve finished me cup of tea I’ll go down there and have a looksee.


The tide should be around the same height just now as when the batcher arrives, 2.85m @ 6:04 and the same at 13:13.

After everything going so well yesterday we’ve moved the pour forward an hour and a half so I’d better shift the booking of Ross’ batcher from 13:00 to 11:25 as soon as the office opens. Say an hour and a half from leaving Sconser and Eyre Plant’s batcher should be here just after 13:00.

Sure enough, all is peachy down at the shore,

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the incoming tide is just lapping the stone ‘shuttering’ that will be the foot of the pour and my ‘forest’ of galvanised M12 bolts bonded into Scotland have not been covered by loose stones.

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The turning area I made for the dumper is still there despite having been ‘washed’ and Calum is sat on a pile of rubble held in reserve Smile

Could not have asked for better

Clock movements aside, Sunday was a ‘perfect day’ and despite having much to do I was chilled enough to take the dugs out for a long walk before breakfast. Instead of the usual wander down to the hydro turbine to check for blockages or slipway to look at progress, we went to Torran Schoolhouse  for coffee.

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The Storr had lost its cold white covering, Loch Arnish and Manish Point looked magnificent with porpoises in the loch and no white ‘fluffy’ breakers on the shore. The corrugated iron look of Saturday gone and a billiard table in its place. It was a truly awesome start to winter, at least my definition of winter which is when the CalMac timetable changes and the clocks go wonky Smile Yup, it was a ‘good to alive’ day and the prospect of the best cup of coffee beckoned. My Italian heritage has had me drinking STRONG black coffee on and off for over fifty years I guess and outside my Father’s homeland I’ve only ever had a decent cup twice. When I say ‘decent’ I mean in, as I had in Italy and that is so strong that you have to put three sugars in a tiny cup to make it palatable Smile I had a cup in Cafesia in Broadford a couple of years ago that ‘hit the spot’ and I always get one at my Mate’s house over in Torran. I am talking cups you can stand a spoon in and leave you rattling right enough. Well after two of those with Andrew and family I was ready for anything Smile

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Once home I assisted Wifey in moving furniture for more of her unusual painting,


seriously, it grows on you Smile


especially when you find your son’s ‘stash’ Smile My oh my, my boy has good taste Smile

Slow roast pork belly

Still a little early for slip work I started prepping dinner, a slow roast pork belly.

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Sure I did do some Googling but in the end just used my initiative with the home grown pork and veggies from the Raasay walled garden. Just rubbed salt, pepper olive oil into the pork, laid it on a bed of carrots and celery, sliced garlic, apples, spuds and garlic on top but forgot the onions!! Then bunged it in the oven for 30 mins at 9 before turning down to S for 4 or 5 hours.

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That done it was off ‘diggin and dumpin’ again with not a breath of wind and both turbines having a well earned rest Smile

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When the tide did ebb it was a relief to see all my stone shuttering still in place and a pure joy to be walking back along Calum’s road to collect me dumper.


Even the hens got let out for a wander in the garden Smile


And yes, dinner was awesome with extra roast Rooster potatoes and gravy.

Anyway, better go, it’s 7:15 which to the pigs is 8:15 cos their clocks do not change Smile

October 27, 2018

Good riddance :-)

Well, what I thought was a disaster  turned into a great result,

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sure the big sea that was running did ruin my dumper turning spot. Having spent much of yesterday making it I was somewhat disappointed to see most of it washed into the sea as I headed south to collect the new washing machine.

I’d finally given up on the Panasonic  NA-127VB5 washing machine. As with most of our ‘white goods’ it was the most efficient that money could buy and cost us an ‘arm and a leg’. However, unlike the rest of our appliances it’s been a piece of carp right from the word go. It failed within a few days of getting it and fair play to Panasonic they did say they’d replace it as it was so new. Stupidly I said “I don’t want a new one I want someone to come and fix it” bet that was a first for the lassie at the call centre Smile Sure if I’d been living in some crescent in suburbia I’d have got a new one but getting anything to Sonas is a hassle at the best of times and the thing was all plumbed in. I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve regretted that decision. The engineer has been out twice to it and the thing has never worked properly, not only that but it lies and takes ages to do a wash. Sure it says it can do a 30 minute wash but an hour later it’s still churning away. The last straw was all the messing about with the door catch and eventually fitting a new one only to find that that didn’t fully cure the fault. Friggin’ thing kept coming up with an error code saying the door was open. Worst of it was it could come up one hour into a 30 minute wash and you’d have to do the whole thing again Sad smile

So, after 30 years of buying so called quality machines, two Bosch and this Panasonic we just got the cheapest and simplest Beko. Darling wife knows plenty of folk that have ‘cheap and cheerful’ washers that give years of trouble free service so I went with her advice. The last Bosch we had flooded the room it was in the first time we used it due to a badly fitted hose. The one before that had to have a new door seal when only a couple of years old and none of them were ever happy running off the generator.

Winter is here

The machine had been delivered to Sconser yesterday and the boys on the ferry had kindly put it in the van for me so all I had to do was intercept the van on it’s rounds to the shop, Raasay House and Raasay Distillery. I couldn’t do anything down at the slip until midday anyway so it seemed like a good way to pass a couple of hours (as if I couldn’t find anything else to do) and it would make Wifey’s day Smile

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It had a right wintery feel about the day with the first snow on the Storr a good sea running out in the Minch and Dunn Caan looking chilled Smile


Speedwell and Lustre at the Raasay Harbour


After a brief trip to the Raasay Stores I managed to track down the van and collect the washer on what was rapidly becoming a better day.

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I couldn’t have planned it better

It must have taken me the best part of an hour to get home between me driving slowly with my precious cargo, stopping to take pictures and reversing the best part of 400yds with the trailer cos the car I’d met at Oscaig was driven by one who could not Smile However by midday the sun was shining and whilst is was less than 4 degrees outside,

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the solar hot water collectors were at 73 degrees!!!

Once the new washing machine was home and plumbed in I set off down to the slip to meet my mate, initially with a heavy heart.

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However, that was soon uplifted when I discovered that the stones had filled in a hole this enabled me to track Calum the Kubota down much further. I had tried yesterday and lost my nerve Smile

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With Calum so far down I managed to move a whole load of large rocks onto the exposed side of the slip. Then we just dug out the stones deposited by the sea with our hands and Calum’s bucket.

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Of course they could all be back in there tomorrow Smile I’m sure some will but the wind and sea have both eased and I’ve all day tomorrow to take them back out!

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