View across the Outer Harbour of Stornoway

Sunday, 3 February 2013

Sunday 3 February

A day of ferry tales, and they were not exactly fairy tales either. The day started with the cancellation of the service on the Uig - Lochmaddy - Tarbert triangle. The Finlaggan had broken down. This meant that all this traffic had to come north to Stornoway to make the crossing to Ullapool. The distance from there to Uig in Skye is 170 miles, although the distance from Ullapool to Glasgow is the same as from Uig to Glasgow - 225 miles. The Hebrides had to wait more than 2 hours for everybody to turn up from Leverburgh and left at 4.45, 2 hours 15 minutes late. As I type this, at 10pm, it is chugging its way across the Minch in worsening conditions. She should be in by about half past eleven. The wind has started to pick up, and the birds were very excitable this afternoon. After a flock of starlings had taken wing, two goldfinches were left scanning for leftovers. Winds will increase to 50 mph overnight, and that will be sustained throughout the day.


Saturday 2 February

Last night's rain caused no end of problems on the road, and in the middle of the night even the temperature by the sea (where I am), dropped sufficiently low to allow a thin blanket of snow to fall.

By daybreak, the gritters had been round and it had all disappeared. It did remain cold and it took until lunchtime for all the slush to melt.I have been receiving a couple of postcrossing postcards in recent days, after I sent some off at the beginning of January. Those took rather long to get registered, but it's always nice. So far, I have received 140 since 2011. Due to the cost of stamps, I am restricting myself to 5 cards each month.

We are on warning for a storm on Monday, which will last all day, and take right through Tuesday to die down. The causative depression will track between the Faeroes and Scotland, with a central pressure of 055 ,bar - windspeeds could reach 50 to 70 mph, with even higher gusts. Last week's storm carried winds of 135 mph over the mountain tops.