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

Posts tagged ‘Five Sisters’

Happy Accountant and Bank Manager.

A mug of  yogi liquorice tea, with its little tag saying ‘Enjoy the breath of life” and a couple of oatcakes laden with butter and Camusterrach honey seems to have completed the recovery.  Two bananas and a paracetamol at 8.00pm followed by breakfast at 8.30pm tells me it was a long migraine today. It was not so intense as the usual ones and was only nauseous the once but it went on for ever or felt like that around six when I should have been relatively healthy again. Not had such a debilitating one for a long time, stayed on the couch while Angus, the window cleaner was in, and could not get the diesel for the generator as requested. I actually headed off down the road but got as far as the church before turning back. Tomorrow morning if they did not manage it as fishing is planned, weather good and looking forward to it although not expecting many prawns but lots of tangles. Always connections around here and yesterday I was chatting to one of the ladies at Highland Wholefoods and talking about just this gluten and headache reactions. She was telling me her fifteen year old was suffering terribly from bad headaches and the gluten-free was introduced last easter….result no headaches, just that simple. So decision made gluten-free diet coming up.

Enough of that and yesterday was such a good one, leaving to see the accountant with the pier books done, I hope. Family all settled in for a hard day ahead.


Trip involved going to Kyle first and the Bealach was looking broody.


Called in at the Bank of Scotland and came across the first very pleasant surprise of the day. Met Nigel and brought back memories of an old style bank manager. Not that the recent ones were bad, in fact just the opposite as they had there hands tied by central office and were not allowed to make any decisions themselves and they did not like it. Today I got all the statements I had lost and more so first hurdle over and it was through to Inverness via Loch Ness. The Five Sisters stopped me at Shiel Bridge


and then further along the road noticed one of the feral goats with her young trotting behind, grazing on the roadside verge. Spur of the moment stopped at the next lay by and walked back to where I had seen them. Took a few photos but was more concerned when the mother nipped up the side of the hill


and the kid could not get across the ditch.


With cars charging by and the kid very nervous, running across the road seemed to be an option so a wee rescue had to be undertaken and a lift across the ditch for a reunite with her mum.. Nice quiet drive through with a fair bit of snow by the road side and now regret not stopping again for a few more snaps, just the one and without the snow.


Next it was to see Keith and the usual banter. “I thought I was going to see you in July” that was last year’s promise. Did not make one this year, not a public one anyway. Get on with him which is just as well, borrowed a room and half an hour later I had every transaction noted and only my VAT workings to give him and maybe no fines. More banter and off to Highland Wholefoods, book buying, and the Co-op and Gaelforce before picking up Greg for the journey home. A short one as we chatted most of the way and back before you know it. Head only started after getting home so with today out of the way I am back to enjoying the breath of life. That and enjoying the company of a happy accountant and happy bank manager, a good couple of days.

Trying to Make a Migraine positive.

Long day today. That can be the only description for going through a migraine type headache. Todays was a little different as it did not start as one but developed into it. Up at 6.20 am and light headache required a 500ml paracetamol and it was going to be off in an hours time but not to be. By 12 olcock I was holding my head and throwing up through the afternoon. Probably worse on a day like today but such is life. I would far rather not have them but I do think it makes you more aware of other people’s situations and even illnesses. I do n’t think I am quite as dismissive of the headache or back problem as those who right people off as scivvers. I physically could not have put a fire out if it was my own house that was on fire. I detect a lack of compassion in the country at the moment from the legislation being passed and the phone-ins I hear on the boat. Quite shocked at the dispassionate comments from, I assume, city dwellers who were slagging off farmers for not being careful with their stock and it was their fault for losing ewes and lambs because they should have had them inside. More and more I see and hear people drifting away from nature and what is real and it does not bode well for the kids. That’s the moody ill bit over and done with. Yesterday was sublime and a day at sea was therapeutic for the body and soul and hopefully tomorrow will cancel out today.


Again the weather was sublime and I am going to stop apologising for taking pictures of the Cullin and keep taking them. This time in the morning with the sun rising over The Five Sisters there are a wonderful display of shadows on Skye.


Halfway through the day in the shallower water on the middle bank I came across a large family of hermit crabs, one stopping for a photo before going back over.

Working my way south I was getting a little apprehensive as there were three fleets I had not hauled for a while but all was well and no foul ups. Last fleet to haul picked up my last awol fleet and although it will take a bit of sorting out when I haul it next week it is good to get new gear working again.


There are lots of signs of summer about, this time the Hebridean Princess steaming up from the south end of Raasay and the muir burning is in full swing much to the chagrin of  many of the local fire brigade who are trying to get on with normal life.


Not been down the south end of the Sound but the Five Sisters look magnificent with their top of snow and on the way up to the Inn looking west the sky was a van stopper.



The shift at the Inn started off a little slow and slightly disjointed but once you start interacting it comes together and once again we had a 100% satisfaction rating. The Fishing News cartoonist is staying at the Inn and I would never have known but he overheard my conversation with the Irish family on table D about fishing community and life on the NW of Scotland. The Irish family were great conversationalists,unsurprising I suppose, and we sorted out Independence the Irish economy, and just life in general. Does not matter what we said but it felt like I was making new friends My shift finished with a staff drink of a scoop of Baked Banana and the latest offering Rhubarb Crumble ice cream. Another sign of summer.

A couple of stories from the French piper. As he was playing in Marseille one of his onlookers had put a bag down and wandered off forgetting it and not long after Ruairidh found himself surrounded by the elite of French bobbies and a bomb squad. He is now in Lille and couch surfing his way through France. Saving the best till last. The guy’s flat he is staying at has gone to Strasbourg for the weekend and has left the key with Ruairidh. This reminded me of a similar situation north of Salt Lake City when I was hitching across US of A. Wonderful to see such trust given and not abused….

Beauty and the Beast

Possibly because of the fantastic weather the posts are coming thick and fast. Morning did not start off very well but expected as I had to connect my batteries up. Not a hard job at all but awkward as I have to lower down to the engine room and across to the starboard side. What i did not expect was the splash of acid on my face and in my right eye. Never moved so fast in a confined space with my eyes tight shut. Extremely nervous for about five minutes but vision cleared to blur after the eye bath. Feels like I am wearing a contact lens again. Unfortunately the gauges tell me that I need a new alternator. Will not stop me fishing as I just take batteries off each night until I get sorted. Nuisance but that’s life. Strange day in that I was bothered with my eye and then usual headache comes along to keep it company, my alternator problem, and at the same time the weather and environment I was in was absolutely stunning along with a couple of bits of life from the seabed.


This little fern came up on a creel and got me to thinking that creels do a little damage to the seabed as well but is in comparable to the destruction of the beam trawl or dredge. I know I have strong views on this but this “sea fern” would not have survived if I was fishing in a trawled area. Mr Sea Slug would have struggled to get out of the way of a net as well.


With my batteries running down, I always assumed that they would not have lasted a day with all the equipment on board, made it till 3pm before heading in from further south than normal and the view of the Five Sisters was not bad.


Back to the moorings safely and on up the road, after removing batteries again for charge, to the Inn with fresh langoustines, tails and squat lobster tails. Yet another two cars bite the dust, the low winter sun a contributor to this accident. Between Applecross and Sheildaig I know of nine cars either in hospital or the morgue in the last two weeks. It is so tranquil here.



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