Life at the end of the road

March 13, 2019

Almost half way :-)

Filed under: boats, daily doings — Tags: , , , — lifeattheendoftheroad @ 8:24 pm

Gosh, we’ve been here a week already !!!!! We being Finlay, Sandy, Molly, Leah and myself, it was CalMac ‘crew change’ day yesterday so we lost Jim and gained Steve plus Nick. Two for the price of one so to speak Smile Hallaig is unique in the ‘Small ferry fleet’ in that the regular crew choose to work ‘two weeks on, two weeks off’ and our employer is good enough to ‘humour us’ Smile It suits us but then we’re lucky enough to work on a modern, quiet, vibration free vessel, don’t think for a minute I could cope with regular stints of two weeks on the likes of MV Loch Striven, and certainly not MV Loch Bhrusda. Sure they’re fine boats but you can’t hear yourself think and they vibrate something shocking, fine for a twenty minute crossing twice a day but not 12 hour shifts for 14 days in a row. Of course it’s a PITA being away from home for a fortnight at a time but that don’t happen very often and it does give you chance two mix with the other crews, Jim’s cold meat and cheese wraps were friggin awesome and so was Nick’s wife’s cake Smile

So, I’d normally be relieved next Tuesday but that may not happen, methinks I may be doing an extra day or two but hopefully we’ll be outta here before then and on our own route. Not that there is anything wrong with LA, I love it down here, seriously, Lochaline has got everything and it’s even connected to the rest of Scotland 24/7 Smile There’s a great wee shop, a petrol pump, a ferry to Mull, a hotel, social club, the Screen Machine calls here and Fort William is only an hour or so away. Sure LA has a lot going for it, OK, I can’t wait to see the back of it now but that’s just me Smile I am ‘welded’ to Arnish and Sonas Smile


The ‘half way’ mark was marred by some power glitch during the night, methinks I may have mentioned the possibilities yesterday. Anyway last nights lightning storm had not only had Leah chewing up my ‘redneck hillbilly’ camouflage jacket and several shopping bags in the car. The storm had also sent some of Hallaig’s crucial systems ‘peely wally’ as my wife would say. Sure methinks I’d also been bragging previously how quickly I could fix these ‘issues’ well this morning it took me thirty minutes and not the twenty I’d been alluding to. Well, ‘every day is a school day’ as they say Smile Main thing is I got my fresh ground coffee before sailing on time at 7:00am, just as well, there were two commercials in the queue Smile


In fact it was a pretty busy, fresh and on the whole nice day, bit scabby at the Fishnish end on Mull right enough, the wind veering to the north west had made sure of that but it was nice all the same.


CEG Cosmos departed the West Pier at last with her cargo of timber.


This pickup and trailer belonging to PDG Helicopters brought back memories too. In the trailer were three bins used for transporting salmon smolts by air. These bins full of fish and oxygenated seawater were slung beneath a helicopter which dunked them into the fish cage. When the bin hit the water that float unlatched the lid and it tipped the tiny smolts into the cage. The chopper then lifted the bin back out of the water and dropped it at your feet whereupon you had to close the lid. It was an operation that required the utmost skill cos the pilot was doing most of it via a mirror and he often had to land the bin on a very small platform on the salmon cage, scared the carp out of me but I did it many times and never ‘came a cropper’ Smile

 Smolt bin

That was an easy delivery twenty five years ago to the Fladda site where the bin was reset ashore, many of them were not Smile


MV Paul B heading north up the Sound of Mull,


Sunshine in LA Smile

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