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

Archive for the ‘Bees’ Category

Hegg Mac

In a bit of mild shock this evening over what could have been earlier. I am well aware of the greater tragedy for many folk after the insanity in Manchester. We have a Manchester connection at the Inn and it brings it home that we are never far away from the actions of madmen. These people have to have a disconnect with the norms of humanity to carry out acts like they do. My own potential mishap pales into insignificance when put against what the people of Barra must be feeling tonight, but life for others goes on.

Tuesday was a hit the wall day and that meant that absolutely nothing got done and resulting in eighteen hour days since, not remotely catching up but at least not falling further behind. The weekend featured the music brought to us by Hegg Mac, a band

that Matthias from Karslruhe,

brought over to play their world tour of Applecross. To be perfectly frank I did not hear as much as I would have liked. Saturday night the tour got underway at the Community Hall but as I was fishing and others were younger and keen to go I stayed on and finished at the Inn. Feeling pretty knackered so the ease on down of the late night suited me fine and the second night of the tour took place at the Inn. Busy old lunch even with the poor weather. Although sold as the “acoustic set” there was a fair amount of setting up.

When they did get to play they rocked and sounded really good. Good food

and great music, what more does one need, Raymond taking the snaps?

Again coming to the end of the shift I did not hear as much as I would have liked but did manage the whole of the first set. They finished up at the Walled Garden but that turned out to be my Wall day.

Monday saw me delivering langoustines to Loch Ness Inn, Alison to Beauly, Aron to Toscaig and racing around Inverness trying to organise passports, Gaelforce, Highland Wholefoods, before picking up wood and herring

on the way home. Light and still at the Shed moorings.

Maybe the Tuesday off was so on the cards although I did not see it on the horizon.

Back on the trolley for Wednesday and it was down to the Pier early to throw off some creels for washing,

before nipping up the road for a badly needed massage from Sarah, back to the Pier to wash the creels and then the shift at the Inn. Busy enough with a table of fourteen booked in at 8pm but as they were the Karlsruhe crowd on their last night all went well with only a short wait for tables for a couple of residents. We then finished the night with a truly acoustic session

but again tiredness takes over and I am off down the road for an early start on Thursday as the weather had quietened down.

Fishing fine and one of the fleets back in operation so just the other to find. Unusually have had five attempts at it so far, beginning to wonder if it has been dragged a little out of position. The well forecast weather arrived this afternoon

and it was a pleasure to be out.

Not a lot of sea life about but the views are fine and quiet waters are the order of the day. The bees are looking very healthy and busy

and the garden is buzzing with bees and colour.

That left today to deal with and all was going well. Varuna beached alongside the Pier, another fleet ashore to be washed along with the bottom of the Varuna. Things going swimmingly, not quite getting the fleet ready for going out in the morning as there were a few bars to repair. Not a good set of creels these ones. Have had a lot of the welds breaking earlier than they should. So with the oil change left to do I floated her off. Decided I would make a really good days work and change the oil at the moorings. Only just decided to do that as it was easily put off for a day or two. Went below and thought just a little more water than there should be, pumped her out and proceeded to empty the sump, then saw water pouring in from the aft compartment, another quick couple of pumps, change of oil and filters, open up the aft hatch to a little fountain of seawater coming in where there should be a bolted on anode. Rotted away and still have a little shake thinking if I had put the oil change off the Varuna would have settled on the bottom in about an hour. Phone to Ewen, who picked up parts on the way home and now ready for another beaching, through the night this time. So close to having my wee world turning upside down.

(2.00am) Ashore again after leaning her against the Pier, waiting for the tide and fitting a new bolt, packing and anode on. The light was fine on the way out,

so now a couple of hours sleep before it all starts again.

Back to Hegg Mac and talking to Matthias it seems the name is taken from a colloquialism with an added Scottish twist, basically meaning de stressing, going with the flow and Scottish, even Applecross style. Thought about that many times this evening when it all could have been so different.

Now 6.00am and all is well after my mini scare, the Varuna is back on her moorings, sitting peacefully as though nothing had happened, and I am going to bed after having an hour and a half sleep. So Hegg Mac works but a wee insight to what goes on behind the scenes in getting some langoustines on the plate.

The Spring Winter Battle.

Was going to post this a little earlier today but Dougal was looking a little sad

so brought that part of the day forward. He is now suitably filthy after a wee trip down to Toscaig where he went digging for rodents and tried to consume some afterbirths. The walk always includes other activities such as the wood gathering and the odd shore retrieval. Last winter I was alerted to some salmon farm floats coming ashore just out from Cruary. Had my eye on them and planned a salvage with the Varuna on a high tide and north wind. One however came a floating into the Bay and is now in the garden to be used as a raised bed after having the top cut off and the polystyrene disposed off. Garden is very unkempt but my excuse is I am waiting for the dandelions to seed as there are no end of bees and other pollinators on them.

It being Spring there are signs of growth everywhere.

Where does one start with all the political turn arounds, swings both local and national. Another election which closely follows our local Highland Council elections. I probably would have done anyway but certain that my number 1 vote is going to Topher Dawson, who resides in the west just up the coast, is standing for the Green Party and so far has been the only candidate to visit Applecross. He is a very self-effacing chap who has visited 15 community councils and not once asked for anyone to vote for him. (One of those weird co-incidences has just occurred, a second candidate, Biz, has just been to the door with a leaflet!!) Topher, as well as attending our CC, came up the next day to the Hydro Scheme and up to the Head where he gave me a hand in cleaning the screen, this can be seen in his election leaflet. Then we have Andy Wightman contesting a defamation case in the courts and having to crowd fund for his appeal. http://www.crowdfunder.co.uk/awdefamation This is an appeal that we have contributed to, on two counts, if he goes broke as a result he loses his seat and would be a great lose to the Scottish Parliament, and we need people like him to speak up and out for the many issues that affect us all locally. And finally our neighbouring country has decided to call yet another election, but new UK immigration laws are already having an effect in the Highlands as is seen in Lagan. A family who emigrated to Scotland from Canada in 2008, were running a local shop and coffee shop, are being deported despite petitions, letters, MPs protesting. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-highlands-islands-39657447?ns_mchannel=social&ns_campaign=bbc_scotland_news&ns_source=twitter&ns_linkname=scotland People wonder why we want to have our own country, well not deporting residents who are part of a rural community and not having our MSPs taken through court by directors from a company based in an offshore tax haven would be a start. The local news just broken today is that the Kishorn Yard is now going to be used for building a floating offshore wind farm. Two hundred jobs for a worthwhile cause and all appears well locally. Hopefully it will fit in well with the local economy providing orders and employment for existing local businesses. I am sure there will be unintended consequences in the future but we will wait and see. http://www.kishornport.co.uk/2017/04/floating-wind-farm-to-create-up-to-200-jobs-at-kishorn-port/

The season is well underway although it appears that there is still a battle going on between Winter and Spring. Winter is forecast to win back some more time at the start of next week, but there are days, like today, when the bees are loading up with pollen.

We are caught a bit in the middle of it as we are not getting to sea as much as we would like to. Last week and again earlier this week the catches have not been too bad and for the most part the Inns I supply have them on the menus. The gear mending and washing season is already upon us and yesterday I was along-side the Pier loading up creels that have been clogging up the jetty for the last few months. A bit more activity around the Pier and had to wait while other users landed scallops and the Marine Scotland boat which is working on salmon smolt research.

Cleaned, baited and stacked on board for tomorrow. Getting a little busier on the water

although I am as far west as I have been for quite some time. The bonxies are arriving in ever-increasing numbers

and one or two are looking particularly bright

with a variant of colours on their feathers.

The Inn is busy but apart from Good Friday, when it was off the scale with 534 meals served throughout the day, it has been manageable. The Dream Machine also in operation would have put the figure over 650. I do not work Fridays but the rest of the shifts have been busy enough. Only when people like the Truckers come in from Sheildaig for their weekly band practice do you realise how busy it is. You are just doing the normal job of finding tables for people to sit at and eat the great food. They just shake there heads at how busy it all is. Last week and it could only happen in Applecross Inn but when you have to deal with a booking for seven that was not written down, you take emergency action. Hopefully Geoff and Maureen did not mind too much when I moved their table, yes their table, with their half eaten meal on it to make way for the seven. Knowing the regular customers really well has its benefits as I would not have done that with 99% of the other visitors to the Inn. The Good Friday session was topped off with a three coming in at 10.15pm and looking at the menu.They were told it was all over but checked the fryers were still on they asked if they could have their own chicken nuggets cooked. Okay was the reluctant reply so out one went to come back with nuggets and drumsticks. the kitchen staff duly obliged and as a wee something arranged the drumsticks very artistically in lines like a rack of lamb. Was looking good until the next request was can we make it a takeaway. There is no real answer to this and so off they went, more happy Applecross customers, the Inn caters for all. Last night was a little different as there were lots of twos coming in and we have a limited supply of tables for two. The Boss was getting a well-earned rest so I was on the mix and match. Managed four tables and it gives extra pleasure seeing two couples leaves the table and saying sincere Cheerios outside with handshakes and hugs. Three hours before they had never met. Some people prefer not to share and if they are prepared to wait just a little longer then that is perfectly okay as well. Good food is not exclusive to the Inn and when convenience food is needed to assuage a fierce hunger there is nothing better than hot fried langoustine tails in sea salt and wild garlic leaves from the garden.

The brown bread should be home-baked but the day is not long enough.

To finish I managed a trip to Inverness with langoustines for the Loch Ness Inn and coming back through Glen Torridon on a wood scouting mission by our local tree surgeon, the view looking down on Loch Maree is often worth the stop. One of the iconic views in Scotland.


Just finished a fairly busy shift at the Inn but heart not in it with the news from Plockton. One of our community of fishermen is missing with the boat being found across the loch. A heavy feeling and cannot help imagining the scenario. Will never know but that does not stop the mind playing out the final scene. Tonight we did not have a table ready for a booking and they could not understand why, another trio went away because they were made unwelcome……..they came back and that was repaired but putting everything into perspective I feel so sad. It was only this week that Walter, who was staying round the coast, had gone to Plockton, met with Bruce, and came back with my nickname and a “how are you doing”. Not only do you never expect it to happen to you but you do not expect it to happen to fishermen you know. There are many communities but the one I belong to, despite our ups and downs and disagreements, is a special one and if you lose a member it stops you in your tracks and does make you think that bit deeper. I often have to fend off comments of why are you not out today?. Luckily I have got to that stage in life where I do not have to justify whether I go out or not. Thoughts with the family, it must be a hundred times worse for them. Still a very faint hope that I may be assuming the worst but three days of searching the shoreline around Loch Kishorn has not produced anything positive. (Now a week later and I am afraid we have to bow to the inevitable)

Maybe todays driech weather adds a little to the mood but thoughts that Spring had arrived have dissipated a little. Fresh breeze blowing mostly from the west making fishing non existent and hard work when we get out. The catches have tailed off a little meaning that more fleets of creels have to be hauled to keep the supply going. Unfortunately we are a little out of sync with the numbers of people who have descended on Applecross. Even in the poor weather langoustine and scallops are the popular dishes. Creel caught always get mentioned as many people have not experienced the firm flesh of the creel caught as opposed to the trawled variety. But Spring has arrived between the showers and the snow forecasts

and some days at sea have been spectacular in their clarity.

The other days you just get through.

It is often at sea I see the arrivals and departures as indications of a change in the seasons. When you see buds appearing often there may be snow following. When you cycle home from the Inn on a Sunday evening and you see the three whooper swans take off in line head south and then wheel off to the north flying over Milton to disappear to the north up the Glen then you know Spring has arrived. A truly awesome sight as you see them at the start of a journey that will take them hundreds of miles north for the Summer. Now we have six more on the Loch, one assumes they are ones from further south who are resting for a few days before heading north.

One swallow does not make a Summer but two bonxies make a Spring.

No grass cutting till the dandelions are away as the bees are flying on the odd days of warm sunshine.

We had a week of fantastic sunsets, possibly two weeks ago, time flys, every one different.

Last Wednesday was a day of contrasts. early start to get my bulkhead filter changed and land langoustines for the Inn before taking out a couple of boys from Deep South who wanted to film for a pilot show about outdoor/wild activities and it seems, through a contact, I fitted the bill. All was going well until trying to get the filter back together. I have had trouble in the past with this but after a couple of hours, gave up, sacrificed a washer and it all came together making sure everything wa sealed up as it was downline from the fuel pump so would draw air if not. Knackered with the effort in a cramped space but was just on time for the boys and a decreasing north westerly. Have to be careful with passengers assessing how assimilated they are to the work space and Rufus and Steve did not have their sea legs. The day gradually improved and they seemed happy with what they filmed. They tried a drone flight but was aborted as on the way up it hit one of the buoys on the cat rail, adroitly caught by Steve before disappearing down under. Unfortunately my battery was flat so no photos of the film crew. Ashore in time for a shift at the Inn and the visitors have arrived. There is little time to make much contact now as the numbers mean that you are just trying to find them a table to eat a meal before the next wave comes in.

Saturday and Sunday shifts were a bit like that but still the welcome must be maintained or there is little point in being there. I think that there could hardly be a worse place to work if you did not want to. Having said that when you are a little under pressure some one says something or orders something that is either misheard/misconstrued or just plain wrong you have to keep smiling and back stage there are plenty people to laugh at you as can be seen when little Missy from Aussie land appears with a “mistake” on a plate.

We have attracted a group of Polish residents from London….they drive up every third or forth weekend, the group getting bigger and bigger, Sunday lunch found them colouring in the kiddies drawing books while waiting for lunch, different but then this is the Inn.

Even dealing with the numbers there is nowhere else one would want to be.

Good Weather Hydro

There is a feeling if not quite a saying in Micro Hydro building circles that as soon as you commission a turbine then it stops raining and the weather improves dramatically. And after all the wee snags have mostly been sorted out at the Intake, The turbine  and Poly Tunnel then it does indeed stop raining. Blue skies all round, cannot complain really and when the weather does break we can watch the graph going back up towards the 90kW. Fishing yesterday and a fine day at sea it was


apart from a fleet that must have caused some one an awful lot of hassle, judging by all the cuts and reties and bundle of creels at the end.  Still good catches so not out for too long and did not need to go out today as they have plenty to see through the weekend.

Today it was off up to the Intake


to see what was doing up there as there was a shut down yesterday due to Zeno installing some new software and the restart was on manual.


Ewen was on the case and it was restarted albeit only to 20/30kWs due to our dry spell. Luckily we did all our flow data on one of the driest Springs in recent history so we will have to get used to the low heads meaning there will be not enough water in the river. Dougal loves all this learning about the workings of the Hydro and checking the Intake in particular.


Rest of the day is taken up with a bit of tidying up and getting next winter’s wood sorted out in the continuing beautiful weather. Using this new-found energy and outlook is helping the woodpile. It always seems to work out. Always coming across wood and work and money, if you do not worry about it seems to work out. I think over time you get to a certain level when you realise  that there is so much more to life than money, over time and after thirty years of fishing ……….Fortunate enough to have not gone out fishing and now to feel less guilty about it and enjoy and enjoy a day going up to the Hydro Intake


and just chop wood. At the end of the day I wandered over to the hive to see a lot of cleaning going on and the workers flying in with what may be gorse pollen.


The Inn has been good fun the last couple of nights, tonight really quiet but last night kept on our toes. Wednesday Euan called me out to have a look at the western sky line and it was worth a look.


The new staff from Canada and down south are settling in well and are looking here to stay. Seems some more Aussies on the way so suddenly we are up to full complement and like I said although it was quiet tonight it will not be this summer. Had a very pleasant surprise when I was having my tea and a resident came over to tell me how much he enjoyed the Blog. Makes one smile when praise comes ones way, smile inside which is even more important.

Now we are off to Edinburgh to see how friendly we are in Scotland as the Highlands have already decided we are. Met a lovely couple from Orkney who immediately wanted to vote for us, again that inner smile. Busy day planned for Saturday with land reform, calendars, walks and Green Party candidates to look forward to. So the plan is not to have a hangover which may be hard in the company I will be keeping.

Apple Juice goes on Twitter

It’s been a roller coaster few days, lots of highs and lows and some both at the same time. Working back the way from today which is one of the highs. Back from a day trip to Inverness which included a great intensive wee course at Tuminds. 9Q7Q0075 Had a bit of fun trying to find it, up behind the Inches. Once Annie gave up following the satnav and phoned Rene, we quickly found our destination. No help from me in the passenger seat. I’m no good at back seat driving which is good for the driver. Alison and Zuzu joined us a little later, not missing too much as Rene wanted to know about the Hydro scheme, so he could tailor the course. We wanted some guidance in marketing the share launch for the project, to reach as many people as possible, to invest in a community, green venture. Fascinating topics and lots of info involving LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and Hootsuite. Really well presented and we were all left enthused. Rene is a master of his social media world and his enthusiasm was well put across. 9Q7Q0074 A quick shop before so it was home west at five. Timeless journeys both there and back as we never stopped talking. And as Rene kept saying social media is all about helping each other and it was good to chat about the positive things in our community and wonder about the difficulties. In this context Apple Juice our Hydro offshoot has opened its twitter account and would appreciate any followers who are interested in green energy, community works and Applecross. Apple Juice ‏ Updates of progress will be tweeted through out the summer and of course here. Yesterday not so good, having my first shut down headache for a long time. These are so much less frequent now and are generally aches rather than show stoppers. Could not function and left Netflix on and dozed off and on all day. The result was a night on the couch and a good five hours sleep. I wake up with what is close to a mild hangover, but nice and early. With plenty of time to nip out and get some more prawns for the Inn before heading east. Timed well as there was only one portion left. The cycle home from the Inn in the late evening if it is not raining are a fine experience. This was at eleven. 9Q7Q0031 Sunday another day of surprise and graft and satisfaction, although involved a hard day of pain for the Boss. Arrived at around half ten to find that she had already retired to bed. Less staff on at the weekend anyway so the main show not being there means all available hands full on. Call to the Doc, that in itself tells how ill Judith felt, before going back down to set up the bar. Little hiccup pressurizing the coffee machine but the day went like a dream. Hard work, but to the last customer everyone was complimentary of the food and nicely of the service. Americans seem to be on the move and are very pleasant and open-minded, Bostonians, from the Black Hills, Philly and Colorado. Although a wee rumour from the North Coast saying they lucked on their Americans. Top visitor of the day for me was the arrival early on of George Gunn, poet from Caithness with a fine heritage. Think he was a little surprised to be recognised, but good banter. We have been well patronised by the Gunns of Caithness. Two new countries were in town. Monaco being one but the other was a fine effort, the French Polynesia. Nice comment from the next table, we are all by the water, Wickers and Polynesians, George again. Sort of sums up the day nicely, we are all connected and all working together. Had to be careful telling the Boss how much everyone was doing to keep it going as the tears were coming easily. Long day with a caramel shortbread break before sitting down to a fine venison loin after nine. Weather staying changeable and only managed a fishing day on Friday. 9Q7Q0033 Spent in the company of bonxies and seagulls, 9Q7Q0038 only one winner. 9Q7Q0041 Still not too bad catch and had a few prawns kept back for the poor weather. They are selling well. In between the constant cloud and intermittent rain we get occasional glimpses of the sun 9Q7Q0045 and moon. 9Q7Q0053 Walks still go ahead with the dogs and despite the weather we still get the lovely splashes of colour on the way to the shop. 9Q7Q0058   9Q7Q0056 Eilidh a little apprehensive at Dougal barking at the neighbour. 9Q7Q0050   And have just heard that another member of the herring ring netter, the Mary Anne, Hector has passed away. A generation saying goodbye. The older fishermen of the ring netters are no longer with us and a fountain of knowledge is going with them, always have thought they were a superior level of seamen than I would ever have achieved. They had so much more instinct and experience and found the fish through more natural means than our technology of sounders and gps units etc. The weather has had enough breaks for the bees to rush around and make honey in the brief sun. 9Q7Q0067

Mrs A’s 14 ticks.

Went like a dream. Up early and off to Broadford to pick up a box of personal bits and pieces before making my way to Glenelg. Met the minister for the first time and again , Iain. Was a little surprised at the number who came out to see her off, but plesasntly so. The weather was certainly changeable with Alison and the boys passing cyclists sheltering from the horizontal hail on the top of the Hill. Spring never mind summer has not arrived yet. Or at least arrives for a day and then disappears for a week. And not much change in sight for the next week. Speaking of Mrs A, just before she went through to pick up sons Nos 3and4 in Inverness I had an unusual request. To take 14 ticks out of her. After the funeral/sermon we headed off to the Balmacara cemetery to lay my mum beside my Dad. Emotions held in check as I am only thinking of the cord list, those who are going to lower the coffin. Had a list made out but have to leave a couple open to see who turns up. Made it happen okay and went down to the Plockton Inn for a cracking plate of soup and sandwiches.




Seems it runs in the family, climbing out windows that is, mum’s brother in this case. He was not allowed to play football so out the window he went to play for Plockton against Kyleakin. Would have gotten away with it if he had not broken his arm at the game. Don’t think falling out of bed would have swung it. Reminds me of the time I broke the key in my Dad’s car. A big problem as I should not have had the car and certainly not outside the Dornie Hall at 2am on a Saturday morning. A deal of subterfuge and ingenuity later and I got away with that one. Some more gossip, up to date and not to be repeated. You always get these trips back into the past and a catch up in the neighbouring villages at funerals. Took a little run down Cooper Street and Laurel Bank, now changed hands and renovated since I have been in.

Home in time for work although not sure that was a good idea. Stopped of at what seemed like a TESCO pit stop


but views are always good there.


Saturdays are becoming an evening to get through these days. The Inn experiences a descending crush on Saturdays now with the big tables booked at 6pm and again at 8pm. It is the only way to cope. Maybe it was because of my day but it was almost out of control at one stage although i think it was more to do with lack of communication. I knew some of the group on the big table and all was going well up to the time they were leaving and the next group were sitting down. They had already started but not the booked group so it was almost unpleasant sorting it out over the next ten minutes and the closest I have come to telling a couple of people what I really thought. But all went okay apart from the spilt glass of wine. It may well be a long season and it seems the popular destinations are all finding it harder to cope as the destinations in between are not providing good service so the load is fairly uneven. Going to have to be more efficient to cope in the weeks to come. Sunday was a busy but saner day although the weather is staying so unsettled. It is the hot topic, a couple of decent days then a dip back into late winter. Cannot remember such a broken spell for May. The broken weather does throw up some interesting skies.


The bees are going well and out in numbers on the good days, at least one hive is. Not sure the second one is going to survive. It was always the weaker one from the split last year.


Now Thursday morning and just away to Inverness to the Community Land AGM via Loch Ness. Suddenly no time to do everything so its just a quick finish off and into the van with the dogs as we are staying at Beauly overnight. Once Dougal gets his hair sorted we are off.


Tuesday evening at the Inn was like the height of summer, without the weather, queueing for tables most of the evening but all goes well. That interspersed with a day fishing and another evening shift takes us up to date. The prawns are going down well just now. I think because they are on and off the menu people are ordering them just in case. They are not bad though. Got caught out last night with a group of four residents who wanted a half pint of prawns tailed. I thought it was one for the ladies to share so offered to shell for them.They ordered four, one each. One plateful of langoustine followed.


The haul produced a few more than expected, enough for a box going to Loch Ness Inn and to keep them on the menu till the weekend. Not so many bonxies about yet but always good to watch them battle


and usually win


against the gulls.


And a star fish.


The Americans, last night at the Inn, were grateful to be helped out as their tyre was burst on the Hill. I think they were really mystified that we would help them get the call out, feed them and put them up for the night. If I am broken down anywhere across the world I hope the Applecross factor kicks in.

What is Happening?

Just in from letting the pups out for there last wander on a day which is quite hard to take in. Listening to a couple of owls chatting to each other, one towitting and his/her mate answering with a towhoo. Began yesterday, if that makes any sense, stopped off to vote on the way to work at the Inn.


Boss out being wined and dined so left to Heather, Euan and myself on an easy night with not too many guests to serve. Naturally split the tables and I ended up down the far end and after seeing off the Pennsylvanians and Texans the Parisians and the guys from Marseilles settled in When I got to know where they all came from I announced it to them when the wee biker chappie on table 8 stuck his hand up and claimed Dundee. Good banter which involved a photo of him wearing only his shoes taken at Sand. A tradition and interrupted by a group of six tourists wandering over the next dune and stopping in their tracks. The photo was taken from behind by the way. Nipped out for a sunset shot.9Q7Q9520

Later on a herd grazing out side the back door, going to be even more as the Alt Beag gets closed off less ground for them.


Home in plenty of time to settle down for a results night. I lasted until one before retiring to bed with the radio on. Did not believe the exit poll but was woken up about half hour later to Glasgow cheering and ended up down stairs watching STV in disbelief for the next three hours. Us Scots are a bit unfathomable at the moment but we are certainly activated and whether one agrees or not that has to be good. Managed a couple of hours before getting up to fuel the Auk and then make it out on the water for a fine day of fishing. The day was fine, unfortunately not so the fishing but to be expected and pressure on as we ran out last night. just goes to show these SNP chaps are pretty good, even the weather has changed for the better, no wind and blue skies.


Shore Street, seagulls


first fulmar of the year


and the resident seals


all enjoying the politics of the day. Not missing out are the bees piling in the pollen.


Change on our own patch with a stalwart Charlie heading off into the sunset. Must admit to mixed feelings although glad I met our new Rep, Ian Blackford, about the MoDs plans. The radio being on all day it was wall to wall analysis and resignations and confusion. Basically no one has a clue what is going to happen next. I suspect we are on a road similar to the Norwegian’s process of self-determination. Remember listening to Lesley Riddoch giving us a history of how it happened for them. So long as it remains positive and peaceful I am all for it.

Took my Referendum flag back out when I went up the road to land the days catch and had a mess about. Politics is a serious business but you must have some fun as well as long as no offence is caused. And then it was back up to the Alt Beag,


Dougal and Elidh’s favourite walk at the moment.


Only takes two minutes for him to get into a right old state


but he does enjoy running over through and under the brash.




Sweet chilli squats and an evening of Question Time and snoozing to finish of a day that will live in the mind for a long time. So good to see UKIP getting less than 2% of the vote up here, we are a little different, not better just different and we may be at a fork in the road. So far it is exciting and as long as you stay clear of the fringes of all sides it seems to be respectful. The UK result….well we will see but it involves people in power with a different mindset from me. The one big gap in this election campaign for me was the total lack of how do we live within our environment, where is climate change, how do we carry on in a sustainable way? Keep it simple, fishing tomorrow and the Inn over the weekend, summer work load has arrived.



Tag Cloud

Wee Ginger Dug

Biting the hand of Project Fear

Beyond the Horizon

Commentary and Sustainability Policy Analysis from Dr Calum Macleod

Lenathehyena's Blog

IT'S NOT ROCKET SALAD.........in the Land o' cakes and brither Scots

Scottish Communities CAN

Scottish Communities Climate Action Network

Beyond the Bloomin' Heather

A critical discussion of the history and politics behind Scotland's most beautiful landscapes

Jean Urquhart

following dissolution of parliament this site will move to jeanurquhart.com

Derek Bateman Broadcaster1

An ongoing dialogue

derek bateman broadcaster2

My first and last ever blog (probably)

Small Scales

fisheries and ocean conservation in Atlantic Canada


e-learning, networking, and the UHI


It's got a backbeat. You can't lose it. If you wanna dance with me.

derek bateman broadcaster2

My first and last ever blog (probably)

Jessica's Nature Blog


Shawndra Miller

Giving voice to the world’s remaking

Hiking Photography

Beautiful photos of hiking and other outdoor adventures.


Just another WordPress.com site

Life at the end of the road

the trials and tribulations of an accidental crofter


A Highland GP on life the universe and anything...

Auld Acquaintance

Scottish Independence