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

Must be the sun. It has been shining for the third day in a row now


and it gives another burst of energy. Fished Monday and Tuesday with relative success, still some prawns about but as they are becoming a little more patchy so creels are concentrating in slightly smaller areas so foul ups are becoming more common. Just part of the job and no point in getting upset about it. A little awkward in clearing the lines in the swell and deeper water but needs must.

Bright and sunny so everything feels so much easier and yesterday hauled over 550 creels


and would have been in good time if not for one of these foul ups. Made it to the kitchen about half-minute after cheffie decided I was not fishing. Getting slightly harder keeping the langoustine on the menu, but still it’s good healthy work. The intention for hauling the gear yesterday was that another fleet ashore so washing on Wednesday rather going fishing. But first there was a wood collection to be done as the van was going to the hospital for its annual. Some gash wood as a result of the turbine house site. Fascinating to see the welding machine in action.


Two lengths of plastic pipe put together, heated up to 220c and with a band round the pipe which is eased off the weld once it has cooled down.


The pipe was 3.2cm thick and is built to with stand 17 bar pressure.


The last bit of pipe to be laid over the field is going to be steel as it has to with stand the highest pressures. A bit of help with a fork lift, a couple of pints in the tap for that, and a plan of action at the Inn for the rest of the day, before unloading the van at the house. Then out to the Varuna and the creels thrown ashore and the Loch Ness inn langoustine taken across and left in the water at the dinghy. Dougal keeps cool in the sea


Up the road for the pups and back down on the bike for the pressure washer, music and sun. Efficient, so the 70 creels are cleaned in two hours.

9Q7Q1039 To the Walled Garden next for a quick-lunch before the Trustees meeting.

(Late Friday evening) There was not a lot to say about the Trustees meeting, later for that. From there to the Inn where it was a nice peaceful night, few queues for tables and able to chat to one or two people. Finding there is just not enough time to do everything that needs to be done. Thursday was one of these days where being self-employed is a bonus. Change of plans and instead of going down to the Pier to mend some creels I head up the road to take a fuel delivery. Little problem with the padlock and had to phone home for the bolt cutter to get the petrol unlocked. Quite a price drop and it is down to £1.15/.16 a litre and hearing the world news it may stay that way for a while. Burning fossil fuels becoming cheap again, not very sensible, as clever as allowing fracking in areas of scenic beauty and not an offshore wind farm. Made it to the Pier and mended the fleet


before nipping out to the Varuna for the last of my langoustine. They looked in good shape


and settled in to a 3 till 10.30 shift at the Inn. Uneventful until Room 4 wandered up to tell me they were locked out of their room. Easy or so I thought, master-key but for some reason the sneck was down on the Yale lock. Told the window was open so down the Street for Tony’s ladder, counted the windows, tried the window but it was locked so down and a recount, reckoning that Room 7 had two windows, so back up the ladder armed with two oyster knives to ease the sash window open. The Zimbabweans staying in Room 6 and 3 were not impressed with my breaking in efforts and were giving me stick from across the road. Just as well they were there as when I eventually levered the window open, using a couple of oyster knives from the prep room,  enough to fall in to the room I discovered I was in Room 6. Quickly nipping out the door, down the stairs and a recount I noticed that yes the only open window was Room 4. Back up the ladder, this time accompanied by Austrians having a laugh. Got it right this time and back onto service where Linda hardly noticed I was away. Went well, good as the Boss was away for a couple of days, until it got a bit hairy around the back of eight. All the resident and regulars were sorted and seated but they kept coming in. Family from along the Street, the Hydro boys and several randoms. Makes for a stressful last hour or so as people who have eaten looked very settled. Great they do but does not help every one who wanted to eat. Got away with only asking one table of three guys if I could move them to the bar, happy to do so and the rest slotted into place. Finished the night with a chat about our imminent Share Issue and chatted to Jock and Heather from Guernsey and Chris and Lesley from Emmerdale. People who really care about our community, who have felt welcome and seem to want to help our community survive. Left in good humour, partly as a result of having another fine community conversation and being able to seat everyone to their satisfaction. Good to see who, when asked to share, hit it off and end up chatting for the rest of the evening. You know when it does not work but this is not the norm. Up and down the road has suited Dougal and Eilidh but with the weather this week, the only week like it in the summer, it has been good to stop at Milton loch for a soak and top up.




Friday after a deep sleep and not really expecting to go to sea with the forecast on XCWeather last night checked to see if there was much white water accompanying the strong southeasterly wind and decided that as there were going to be no langoustine for the weekend I had better get out on the water. Turned out I was right and after a fairly frantic sorting out the deck trip out, I started hauling in nothing more than a stiff breeze. not too many  in the first three fleets and a large number of berried prawns, it was not looking too good for the menu. However after hauling over 400 pots there was a decent catch on board despite the wind picking up in the afternoon. A hard work day but rewarding. long sleep now and plan to start the winter wood pile tomorrow as the arrows are darker red and the wood pile is almost non-existent.

Comments on: "Breaking into Room 6, supposed to be 4" (2)

  1. My word, you’re a busy man Ali – yet you still find the time to write about it. The hydro sounds very interesting – looking forward to seeing more pics as it develops.
    Re the fracking – money talks louder every time doesn’t it? Just wait until something goes wrong with the aquifers down there – they’ll be wanting to steal the water from your hydro and have it pumped all the way down to Dorset! 😀

    • applecrosslifeattheedge said:

      Aye Bob, keep saying it, “the boys” obviously have not enough money in renewables. Subsidies in tracking, oil and nuclear, while taking them away from wind, sun and water. Makes you weep. Winter is on the way and quite like the fact will be doing a bit less soon. Ties in with the seasons and nature.

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