A view on Fishing,Community and Life on the NW coast of Scotland

At last, my fishing career is back under way. An early start, up around five, and on board by six and off out to the Bay. Not a huge amount to report apart from a breeze from the south-south-east combining with little 6/7 creels fouled ends making the day hard work.

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Traffic on the Sound as usual, must have seen he camera as got a blast of their horn on the way past,

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as were the very awkward foul ups. But the fishing was a little more productive than it has been of late and the 300 creels produced enough to put the Langoustines comfortably back on the menu till I get back out on Monday.

One of the reasons for the early start was meeting up with Rob and Ian in Shieldaig to check out if there was much to do about the MoD expansion plans. A pity that there was a wedding afoot locally as the only guys to turn up were three from Applecross. Was a bit of an effort to get there a little late but glad I did. One wonders what you can do if the MoD decide they want your livelihood but you have to try. Otherwise complaining in the pub only becomes irritating if that is all one gets around to doing. Information gathering was the order of the day and to say that our way of life is at stake is not an exaggeration. Interesting to be shown some FoI MoD maps that show the extent of their interest in the Sound. The southern line is well to the south of current Range edges and if this is what is planned for the future then fishing will be a thing of the past in Applecross. As it is the “map” that has been circulated recently has caused a lot of consternation with the local ranks with enquiries launched as to how this has been made public. One speculates that it does hold a level of importance, that it was not meant to make it into the public domain. The puzzle amongst the fishermen is why does it show the closure up to the shore, leads to one or two wry comments about practising groundings. The Americans have also been mentioned as a possible further commercializing of the Range. Managed a wee political chat about land reform and deer management before making it back around the North Coast,

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picking up a few slabs of herring on the way and back home in time to catch the best of the Scots trying yet again to beat the English at Twickers.

The Inn in the evening and fairly busy it was too but remarkably relaxed. Find there is little point in spinning. You get far more done with a bit of thought rather than rushing about looking busy and not achieving much. Today (Sunday) was a little different in that there has been a staff shortage for a few days now and it catches up a little in small ways, the condiments run low for example. Things that are done when there are enough around to do the extras to make everything run smoother. The great thing about the last couple of shifts has been how pleasant and appreciative everyone has been, possibly the glorious weather has been a factor. Today was wall to wall sunshine on the way to work

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and again on the way home where several stops and a walk with Dougal and Eilidh allowed me to wallow in a fine sunset.

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These dogs are so good at getting you out to enjoy some fine sights.

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Just now it was a little wander under a starry night black night.The busy day was not helped by a pretty brisk headache but only the Boss knew and asked when it was peaking. Made it through and it did not develop. Kept at bay through necessity and helping a couple who had a breakdown above Keppoch. It is easy to help people and after a couple of trips to the car, a few phone calls at the Inn and finding a room at the Hostel, I left them fairly satisfied with the “problem” of having a puncture on the Hill. They were sitting outside watching the sun sinking behind Raasay sipping some white wine and wondering what to have to follow their lunch of scallops. Hire cars with no spare wheels are just daft as repairing tyres that are split does not work and the expense of calling out the local garage surely does not justify not carrying a spare. I am working on the basis that if I breakdown outside Applecross some one we have helped here will pass by and tow me home. If that never happens I will be content with the fact that I have helped some one out and they appreciated it.

A wee footnote from the previous post is I was informed the gulls that I thought were feeding were indeed doing that but were at the outfall of the Russel Fish Farm. Not quite as natural as first thought. So the feeding took a different form. Cannot beat local knowledge.

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