View across the Outer Harbour of Stornoway

Sunday, 9 December 2012

Sunday 9 December

A quiet day, with occasional showers and rather lower temps than yesterday. We managed 6C / 43F. The coming week will see benign weather, with good bright spells and moderate temperatures for the time of year. High pressure is taking up residence overhead, which tends to give rise to settled weather. It is the continuation of a weather pattern that has been present all year.

Typhoon Bopha is no more. After making a resurgence on Friday and Saturday west of Luzon, the storm collapsed from 85 knots to below tropical cyclone warning strength within 24 hours. Tropical cyclones require an even flow of wind at all levels of the atmosphere (they reach up to 10 miles up), and a strong windflow from the northeast monsoon killed Bopha just as it started to wreak havoc on the west coast of Luzon, Philippines. I anticipate that we shall never see the name Bopha used again, in view of the hundreds of lives lost in Mindanao and Luzon over the past week or so.

Earlier today, one of my FB contacts returned to their home in the Western Isles from a visit to Inverness, saying welcome back to civilisation. It is a tongue-in-cheek welcome, as some people go to the city to go to the theatre, the film or attend to various pieces of business. However, over the years that I have been in Lewis, I have found Inverness (and any city) to be place I cannot wait to get out of. Too many people, too much noise, traffic and what not. There is also a degree of friendly rivalry in this part of the world. The people from Stornoway look down on the teuchters (the country bumpkins) from out of town. Those from Inverness look down their nose at the country cousins from Stornoway. The people in Edinburgh look down at the Highlanders from Inverness. And Londoners look down on those Scots from Edinburgh.

I was talking about the busy streets of Inverness.

Your average road in this island looks like this.

Saturday 8 December

A milder day than of late, with the mercury reaching the dizzying heights of 10C / 50F. We did not see much of the sun today, although the sunset was quite creditable.

I went into the town after dark to photograph the Xmas decorations. Although they look very festive and colourful, their extent and variety has sadly decreased considerably over the years. Austerity has bitten deep here.

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