Christmas Eve, 4 pm and it has been a real poor day here. It is passing now as the light goes and the forecast for tomorrow is a bit better. Roll on tomorrow morning, looking forward to the pressies!!
It was not all bad last week although it has been a bit of a blur. The connection to the Applecross Community broadband system failed again, this time one of the controllers.
It was quite nice up there but I had to jam the bike against the box door otherwise the strong winds were in danger of sending it to Shieldaig.
I was back and forth a few times but with Ian Bolas the engineer from Rum’s help, we got it going again. However, almost next day it stopped again but this time the fault was on Raasay so, nothing I could do to help. Just as well we still have the satellite BB here. A pity for the Alligan, Fernamore and Diabeg communities though at this time.
Unfortunately I don’t understand how this all works (well I do a bit) but with a bit of guidance it is amazing what you can achieve and as you are doing it, it starts to make sense.
Every time I was up at the mast the Sea Eagle was about, quite close too. So I put the remains of the hind up there to take the pressure off the lambs. Hoping to get a close up, but all I saw to-day were dozens of Ravens and gulls. Lately someone did ask ‘What About The Wildlife’ . I’ve just finished a book by Seton Gordon, A Highland Year. I thoroughly recommend it and am sorry it has taken so long to get to reading Seton Gordon’s work. Some of the writing could be applied to this time for sure, some issues were just the same in the 1940’s when it was written. Especially on conservation. He writes about Skye and Deeside in this tome and it made me think of how I observe wildlife. I guess because I’ve always been out and about as long as I can remember I just see it enjoy it and carry on. But mentally noting what I have seen. Perhaps mentioning to L when I come in from my jaunts around Rona. When I think about it there is a pretty diverse population of birds, animals and sea life here. So, maybe I might take a note next year, a real note of what is here. I think for me it is something that has always been part of my life and I don’t take it for granted but always wonder at what I see, whatever it is. From the Eagles to the wee House Sparrows stealing the grain from the shed.
The Sea Eagles have been about for quite a while, but this month we get Mergansers in the bay and quite a few ‘funny’ wee birds passing through whether by accident or as normal. I don’t know. The hawks are busy and Mr Sparrowhawk certainly dines well in the short days. The otters are quite elusive and of course the mink are always not far away. The wee birds are always flitting about in the birches, I guess keeping a low profile from the hawks.
I heard a funny noise when I was chatting on the phone and thought it was L, but on closer inspection I found our four lambs stealing from a bag of feed left at the door. Next day they were in the room so the ‘Baby Gate’ was put up. Now it is ‘hopefully’ secure from marauding lambs.
Having had a ‘wee’ delivery of wine I was keen that it did not get frosted/overheated. I’d been thinking about a wine store for quite some time and finally got round to it. It maintains the temperature at a range which it should protect the wine, although I hope it doesn’t stay too long in the cupboard!!
Trying to get finished for Xmas we had rather a long day on Monday, we finished the butchering of the last hind/carcase of the year and then minced the cuttings. Sausages were getting short so we had a go at making a few, plus trying out a recipe on venison haggis. Both went well but I’m not too sure of the haggis. I think it needs a bit more ‘something’ added to it. But it is good to use up the bits that mostly go to the Sea Eagle or pet food.
Liz my sister arrived via MV Aspire yesterday, complete with fashion item (hand bag) obviously a necessity on Rona, I think my other two sisters will understand!! Merry Christmas.
Almost finally, last night after a lovely day the sunsewt promised a good day BUT don’t believe any of that Red Sky at Night nonsense, well not out here, It was a lovely evening but to-day………….now that is another story.
The rain over the last few weeks has been making the road very wet in places and we try our best to take action but the sooner H MacKay comes back the better. Second last job to-day was to dig out the ‘now mud’ and replace with stone. I did two loads but with the danger of the whole road disappearing down to Rona Lodge I packed in and hope to get back to it next dry day (but not tomorrow). I finished that just before lunch to-day and then definitely , finally I got on the roof just as the hail started to replace the second Chinese hat that had tilted in last weeks gale.
Time for a dram.
All the best for tomorrow and we will be back.
Emu he appreciated the time you are spending up at the mast. We all hope it is teething problems and it will settle down
Emu he should read much
Highland tear is a fantastic book I must dig it out again must be 20 yrs since I last read it.
Great blog as ever have a great yuletide.
Merry Christmas Bill and Lorrain, Have a Great time, hopefully doing very little. Keep the blogs coming, love to keep track f what you are up to. Best wishes for 2015 Ali and Clive, cheers xx
Hope you guys have had a wonderful Christmas. See you in 2015. Lee & Mel x
Best wishes for a very happy 2015. Look forward to more postings from Rona.