View across the Outer Harbour of Stornoway

Sunday, 15 January 2012

Sunday 15 January

An overcast day, but with a distant promise of brightness - which never reached here. Temperature remains at around 5 to 6 degrees Celsius.

Have finished looking up the service records for the 70 servicemen from this island who served in the WW1 under the Australian banner. Eleven of them lost their lives; two deserted, never to turn up again. Their names will not be revealed by me.

Five people are now known to have died in the grounding and partial sinking of the Costa Concordia off the coast of Italy. A lot of questions remain to be answered, the first one being: is there anyone left alive or dead in the wreck. The second is: how on earth could this happen? The captain has said that he hit a rock that was not charted properly. At least he went out of his way to beach his vessel in shallow water, to give everybody the best chance of survival under the circumstances.
From my perspective, going on a cruise has become too much like going on a bus. Apparently, nobody was given an emergency briefing upon embarkation - anyone who ever uses a ferry or plane will be bored by those briefings. Anyway, that's for the Italian authorities to sort out.