Yesterday I went out a bit earlier than usual to catch the quiet morning before the afternoon northerly breeze got up. Even after 30 years of fishing from Applecross some days are beyond any description I am capable of. The sun was well up and there were a scattered array of clouds creating a moving tapestry of shadows across the land. To the south-east you could see the Five Sisters of Kintail like an etching, to the south-west is the Red Cuillin and I cannot resist taking yet another photo.The dusting of snow still on her with the remains of the morning cloud above the clearing shadows are wonderful to watch. Then to the west you have the Island of Raaasay stretching up the Sound with its distinctive table top of Dun Caan in its middle. You can see the Harris hills through the Blind Sound. Off to the east its home dominated by the slightly foreboding or maybe protective Applecross hills. Perfection and a privilege to be here. Work is not the right word for what I do on days like this.
It was a long day and 500 creels were hauled and although the fishing was poor it did not seem to be important. We take each fleet of creels ashore once a year to wash and do some repair work on them as well as sorting out some splicing that builds up over the year. There is an interesting small crab that we seem to be catching more of recently. It never grows more than 2.5 centimetres. This is it beside a squat lobster and it looks as though it could handle itself.
The evening shift at the Inn was a bit more relaxed with everyone enjoying the fantastic food. Judith took the evening off which is a good sign we are doing something right. A beautiful sunset had people leaving their meals to take in yet another wonderful Applecross scene.
After a day working on the pier sorting out my creels and trying to sort Dougal out it was back off to the Inn for another shift. These evenings are special to the people eating and staying at the Inn. There was a family from East Lothian who could not say enough about their evening’ experience and to be quite honest I was probably enjoying it as much as they were . They tucked into some large prawns I had taken ashore two hours before they ate them. It gives me so much pleasure seeing people enjoying themselves so much and it reminds me of being told once that if we honour and respect our food then it means so much more to us.
The evening finished with another spectacular light show. I dislike intensely that corruption of the english language, “shock and awe” and awesome is over used so much these days but this scene looking across the Sound from the Inn does instil in me a real sense of awe.
On the way home the local network alerted me to the possibility that there was a delivery of worms waiting at the shop. Dai the Post is too wary of Dougal and family’s intentions when he has tried to deliver mail in the past so we pick ours up and sure enough the worms were there so that is tomorrow’s job along with another 500 creels. What a life.