Life at the end of the road

September 4, 2019

A murky start :-(

Filed under: animals, boats, daily doings, shed/house — Tags: , , , — lifeattheendoftheroad @ 9:27 am

Well, that’ll be me back ‘before the mast’ for a fortnight, it’s just after 21:00 so there will be little chance of this getting finished tonight. Still I’ll get something down whilst sat at the kitchen table if only to digest another of my son’s excellent meals, a chicken thigh number with parsnips in a lovely mustard and thyme sauce. I joined the good ship Hallaig at 15:00 after an unusually leisurely Tuesday, normally I’m rushing around like a headless chicken (probably not the best analogy in light of recent events Smile ) but not today. Nope, this particular ‘back to work’ day was blissfully relaxed despite the grey and murky start. I had achieved much during my ‘fortnight off’ so decided, as part of my ‘blood pressure reduction regime’ to go into town early.


It was a dreich, grey but calm morning that must have followed an equally windless night, for the spiders had been out in force.

 IMG_0796 IMG_0797 IMG_0798 IMG_0799 IMG_0800

There were few inanimate objects not festooned with delicate webs, all of which would be full of ‘wee beasties’ in a little while.


For the greyness was lifting and no doubt the midge would be out soon

Me, I just pottered about in the shed until 10:00am then headed slowly down the road in the WiFE to catch the 10:55 for Skye.

P1150045 P1150043 P1150044

The cruising season not quite over, the MS Star Breeze was anchored in Portree bay

P1150046P1150051 (2)Star Breeze in Portoferraio (cropped).jpg

That’ll be her portside take from Glame on Raasay, her starboard from Portree pier and one I wish I’d taken of her in Potroferrario on Elba Smile

P1150048 P1150052

Dunno the story behind BRD18 the former trawler Alex C but she looks in a sorry state, unlike the Serene at the other end of the pier wall Smile

In the ‘brown stuff’ again Smile

After my saunter around Portree visiting feed merchants, hardware stores and garden centres I headed back to Sconser to join Hallaig and catch up with my ‘back to back’.


The poor soul had been a little preoccupied with the disabled toilet and sewage tank earlier in the day Smile You really DO NOT need a sewage plant problem on your last day of shift. Inevitably the last day ‘on shift’ is as manic as the last day ‘off shift’ with hunners of paperwork, ‘end of trip reports’, ‘handover notes’ and ‘checklists’ to finish for your ‘back to back’.

Well, guess what my first job is tomorrow Smile

A couple of new visitors

Yesterday’s post wouldn’t be complete with the two new visitors to Raasay, one launched the year before Titanic sank and the other just last year.

P1150047 Eye-of-the-wind-2010.jpg again, thanks to Wikipedia for a better picture than mine though you have probably seen the 108 year old in various rolls on TV and in the movies.


Me, I was busy catching up with acting ‘Captain Ali’ who was just completing his first week as the Hallaig’s skipper. Must be the first Calmac skipper with a bun hey Smile Still ‘fair play’ to Mr MacInnes, it is for cancer sufferer wigs.

 P1150054 P1150058 P1150061

Raasay’s newest arrival was this serious 490ton workboat the MV Volt Processor Norwegian flagged and probably crewed and built judging by her immaculate condition and build quality.

Not dark yet

That was it really,

 P1150062 P1150063 P1150064

couple of Bambi’s on the way home and some beautiful raspberries for my son’s muesli in the morning.

August 25, 2019

I should be doing something else :-)

Filed under: Avon Searider, boats, daily doings, food, life off grid, shed/house — Tags: — lifeattheendoftheroad @ 10:18 pm

Heading up for 22:00 now and that’s me just sat down after demolishing a crab salad with boiled spuds and a side of scallops and bacon fried in butter. What I should be doing is reading a good book in bed or watching the most gripping piece of TV I have ever seen, in fact the most gripping anything I’ve ever seen

Last Breath.

However it took me the best part of two hours to make me dinner which is about as long as it took me to catch it. That included taking the boat out of the shed, driving it to the slip, launching it and then filling my diving cylinder after Smile Sure, it was only a salad but there’s a lot of work in a crab and it was after 21:00, the time that the film started. I’d seen it months ago before it was released and didn’t think I could handle the suspense and emotion again. Not only that I’m making a superhuman effort to keep doing me blog. You have no idea how tempting the freshly changed sheets and ‘The Sunken Gold’ by Joseph A Williams is Smile

It’s been a funny old day here on Raasay, pretty much all of the island judging by the posts and pictures on Facecloth. One minute blazing sunshine and the next a dreich grey mist.

DSCN2541 DSCN2526 DSCN2527

It had been a long day on Friday and Saturday so I was slow in rising and even slower in ‘getting it together’. They were two emotional days in Tain with friends sharing their grief and celebrating the full but short life of Gary Perks Young Gary was a regular visitor to Torran when he was a lad and knew these hills and woods well.

Cep for breakfast

Eventually, after a full pot of strong coffee I stirred up the enthusiasm to go out with ‘wee dug’ to Torran. The batteries needed a top up and ‘equalization’ and I wasn’t actually inspired to do much else.

DSCN2531 DSCN2529 DSCN2530 

It’s been a fantastic year for chanterelles but the grass was too wet for me to stray off the path, me being afraid of wet feet an all that Smile There were plenty of boletus mushrooms like the ones on the left and they are edible. However they’re best sliced and dried then used in soups or casseroles, just fried fresh they’re a bit slimy and that big cep in the middle would be plenty for me breakfast. The one on the right is a death cap and they too have been in abundance this year Steer well clear of those around an ounce will give you a slow and agonizing death and even handling them will make you ill. If you have ever been unfortunate enough to watch a cat or dog die after eating rat poison, that’s what a death cap does to the human Sad smile

Bubbling nicely

DSCN2532 DSCN2534

Like my own batteries at Sonas these Rolls cells are very thirsty, unlike mine they’re configured for 24V not 48V and around half the capacity. The 2.5kW Studer inverter is more than adequate for the loads there so 24V is a good choice, it gives you a much wider selection of equipment that can be run directly from the battery bank if you so wish.

Once I’d given them a good drink (around 4lts of deionized water) I left the tops loose and set both charge controllers to do a manual ‘EQ’ that’s basically an over charge that’s designed to redress any imbalance in the cells.

Out for a dip

DSCN2536 DSCN2537

I gave the rusella and birch boletus a miss but as soon as I got home I put the cep in the frying pan along with some bacon strips butter and tomatoes. Probably not as healthy as the muesli but it did keep me going until almost 21:00.

DSCN2538 DSCN2542

With the three new cockerels sheltering from the sun in a pig arc I set about doing what every red blooded male does on Sunday and washed the car Smile



It was beautiful at Sonas but I’m 75m above sea level, down on the shore it was really foggy, as I found out when I took half a ton of cement down to the slipway. I’d made my mind up to put the Searider in the water around high water which was 15:40. The tide was only moving 1.55m today with HW a mere 3.85m which is just about as low as the high tide gets. As it happens I never got in the water until an hour after but it was a piece of cake with the dumper, even on my own.

DSCN2544 DSCN2545

I fitted a small electric winch in the shed so I can pull the boat up and lower it down the sloping concrete floor, works a treat, though I should really extend the lead or fit a wireless remote for doing it on my own.

DSCN2546 DSCN2547

Once on the glassy Loch Arnish I went round to Fladda to go and take a closer look at Kaiku

DSCN2548 DSCN2550

a Finnish survey boat that’s been scanning the West Coast for months now.


That’ll be her recent track

After that it was 25minutes at 30m for a few decent clams and a brace of crabs Smile

DSCN2554 DSCN2555

Anyway, that’s it, 23:00 now and well past my bed time, hopefully have more news tomorrow.

Older Posts »

Create a free website or blog at