Sunday it was a good day, best day of the week and what a week, so far.
We had good company with the arrival of our friends Dave and Alison on their motor boat, ‘Baron Kelvin’. We had a dinner together and caught up on the winters events and were all agreed that 2015 has had the worst spring/summer for many years. It is so cold, even on this day if you were out in the little wind there was, it was not warm.
Monday promised calm and it was good day to scrub the barnacles from the bottom of the boat, amongst other boat jobs. As I landed on the shore with the boat the oyster catchers that have been making all the noise in the bay appeared out of the seaweed with two chicks, very protective they were. I took a few photos’ but the minute I got nearer the adults started the injured/broken wing routine and quite impressive it was too.
I stopped taking photos’ and the family continued to feed away just where I was working, quite happy I was not bothering them.
Simon had called in the morning to tell me that my creels were all in a ball, my small creel hauler would not lift them so he offered but not to-day, he was busy and I was on the beach.
I really need anti fouling paint but am awaiting a delivery so will just have to put up with lying on the beach on my back scrubbing the bottom with a bent hoe, sooner rather than later in the year. Most effective the hoe, but better if the paint was not so thin.
I was just about in the water as the tide was rising when two motor boats sped into the harbour upsetting everyone with their speed. They announced they were here to have a picnic and started to moor up to where I park my boat. So a quick exchange and they had tied up on the side left for them. When I mentioned a landing fee there was no rush to pay but pay up they did so I left them too it!!
They were looking for Church Cave but as far as I could see they went the wrong way. Later one of the visiting yachts was telling me they were none too happy having to pay to land, such is the joy of running a commercial Island enterprise. Hey ho!!
Moira and Malcolm had come in earlier in the week on their wee yacht ‘Feshie’. They have been coming for a long time to Rona and it is always a pleasure to see them arrive despite all the weather. The yacht to the left ‘Celtic Oyster’ was up in Scotland after a few years in the Med’ I bet he is wishing he was back there. The wind blew up Tuesday into a real filthy day, rain, low cloud, cold, grey, horrible. Not expecting any visitors to arrive on Rona I thought I would give the larder a quick paint. The first covering was getting a bit ‘washed’ so a couple more coats would spruce it up for the season. I planned to go out Wednesday morning for a look around to see what was doing with the deer. They should have had some calves by now.
In between the showers I got a few outstanding outside jobs done, which just about got me up to date
Everything on Rona is ongoing, a bit like the Forth Road Bridge. I came up for lunch and got an email with pictures from John, who helped when we did this last week. Here we are sorting out the anchor for the reef warning buoy. The reef on the West side of the harbour that catches quite a few yachts (three so far this year) is tidal. Everyone knows it is there but it is easy to forget. So after pulling the last yacht off last month, I decided to put a mark on it, someone did mention that it will probably be picked up as a mooring, I hope not.
Back to Tuesday night, the weather really closed it, no new yachts arrived and no surprise. But in the morning I was surprised to hear from Malcolm about a small cruiser (very small) had been flying about at 5.30am in the morning getting blown about the bay, but they were now anchored.
I went down to the pontoon for a look, it was early in the morning when I took this but you can see it is not the biggest and it turned out that it came in the previous evening at 9pm. When the wind was probably about 30knts (gusts). They had gone out early to head round Skye but thought better of it. (Good plan) All day it blew and it was a bigger surprise to have another three yachts join the ones in the bay later in the evening.
Lorraine had an even bigger surprise when 5 kayakers turned up looking for the bothy (bunkhouse). When they were told that it was £60 (for 5) for a warm bed, wood burning stove, cooker, showers and drying facilities they said we have no money and that “we will just camp”. At that moment the rain came in, the mist came down and it got dark. Good decision, camping sounds like real fun in this weather. I guess once you have bought the kayak, the go pro camera, the i phone, etc, etc, there is not much left for a back up plan if it goes sour with the weather!!!!!!!
Trying to generate an income on Rona has always been a struggle but the small charges we do have are certainly not over the top and every where we go from Rona we expect to pay, so, why is it that we this problem (only with the minority I hasten to add) although the shop on Canna reached new heights on non payment this week past, I see. The Canna Shop Raid certainly hit the headlines but I’m not surprised, we have CCTV, lock everything and don’t have many problems, sad it is that we have to do that but that is what we have had to do.
Finally Richard from Skye Express who carts all or most of our stuff to Portree for on going to Rona said to me to-day (Thursday), it is only three days until the longest day/mid summer (21st June) then the nights will start to draw in, cheers Richard!!!!