Grey, Wet and Windy, at Last!!

22nd July: The first Southerly gale this season woke us up gusting pretty much force 7 +, but it was good to hear because we would not be able to rush outside and get on with the mountain of stuff to do. To be honest we are up to date outside but inside, sheep records, venison chill temperature records and blogs are enough to do without the paperwork associated with running Rona adding to it all.

Friday 20th we had the guys out on the boat fishing, great fun at the gap with the cottage guests, Jim and his wife the fisherfolk were put into second place by Dave and Jane’s daughter Alana, who caught the most Makerel. The submarine was out in the Inner Sound and under water so maybe it scared the mackerel towards us!! When we arrived back outside Big Harbour the Sea Eagle went overhead with something in it’s talons. On blowing up the pictures it looked like a fish but difficult to identify. He was being mobbed by the black backs but unconcerned. this sighting was as good as the peregrine down at Dhu Chamas earlier in the day mobbing a Raven who was patrolling the cliffs.

Dave looking the part

We had a fair haul and then picked up our lobster/crab pots. For the first time ever we had three lobsters in one pot. They were all keepers and very enjoyable they will be too. We put the crew back to base, filleted and gutted the fish, distributed them out and headed back to the sea. We picked up the prawn creels which were pretty poor and I spotted repairs to be done so planned an evening trip to collect them but we baited them just in case I could not get out later. Dave and Sam were ‘competent crew’ and we enjoyed a very sunny fishing.

Once I had frozen down the fillets, cleaned the boat, dealt with our yachting visitors who were keen to buy fish and venison, I had my dinner and headed out again. The wind had picked up but the light was very clear. It was a beautiful night and when I picked up the prawn fleet I had a better fishing than I’d had from the same fleet that was out for a week, quite exciting, must try that again.

Eilean Tighe from the Sound of Raasay

Heading Home

Friday was the best day!!

Saturday 21st started greyish with the skies trying to clear but with the impending gale we thought it would be lucky to clear. It was a nice dry day though and we got on with the changeover. It has been a funny year with the cottages, lots of fortnights and staggered days for changeovers. In fact our cottage guests that were coming to-day are now languishing in Portree as the ferry is stormbound. Hopefully they will get over on Monday.

Changeover is busy but we really benefit from a dry day, lots of stuff lying about, therwise it would be difficult.

Baggage Handling

Once it had settled down we headed up to the studio, (garden cottage, summer house) to fit some tie down strips. Ian advised I do that as soon as possible. We found some tie down strip from Rona Lodge renovations and Kevin took over the truss clips. Unfortunately they were the wrong ones so we had to go to plan B and cut up the four that I found in the dump (carefully stored), They were joist hangers though but with  a wee bit of cutting I turned them into truss clips, anyway, they survived the wind (so far).

Truss Clips (modified)

Sometime tomorrow we’ll get the building paper on and straps. L was busy yesterday with her new toy the De Walt saw cutting up OSB board to make strips for holding on the paper. Once we get that on we’ll be ready for the box profile. Must get it ordered.

L playing with the De walt

By six o’clock I was bushed so a bottle of beer kindly given to us by Chris and Neal our returning cottage visitors quenched the thirst, then dinner quickly followed by a half hour unloading the creels for repair.

Running Repairs

Back to to-day, still grey, very February but the rain will bring on the mushrooms. One yacht in, don’t know it’s name the dinghy is covering the stern and the name is difficult to read in the swinging wind. The crew haven’t been ashore (or moved) since they arrived Friday, what do they do!!!

Enough for now, dinner is calling.




About Bill Cowie

I've been living on the island since April 2002, alone for the first 5 years, my partner L joined me in 2007. We manage the Island for a Danish family who bought the Island in the early 90's. Their hopes for the Island are to make it self sufficient supporting its inhabitants and that is where we come in. We look after the stock, 3 holiday cottages, machinery, boat and of course the visitors. It is pretty challenging but it is a beautiful place to live and work, we love it and strangely enough we love it even more in the depths of winter when all is quiet apart from the gales and rain. We do a bit of fishing, stock work, stalking deer and loads of other stuff. We have good support from lots of people whom we have met over the years and have become involved in the Island. Too many to mention here but keep an eye on the blog, they'll be there for sure in the future.
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