View across the Outer Harbour of Stornoway

Tuesday, 11 February 2014

Monday 10 February

Afternoon all from a fairly bright Stornoway. We had some pretty heavy showers earlier on, but the sun is out now. The bomb squad is in Stornoway to deal with the unexploded French ordinance that was found at Gress Beach yesterday, and a fishing boat was towed into port this morning after breaking down off Harris. Meanwhile, the burning of rhodondendrons in the Castle Grounds continues apace, when will they ever be done with that.

So here I was, innocently going about my business when I came across this heap of feathers outside the back door. I had been seeing some collared doves around, attracted by the seeds from the bird feeder, and I thought they had been having a spat. Until I noticed two large bloodstains on the concrete path. Oh. A year ago, we had a visit from a sparrowhawk, which made a meal of a sparrow. This time round, it must have had a very good lunch off a dove.

A fishing boat that broke down off North Uist was towed into Stornoway this morning for repairs. By 3pm, it was already on its way back out.

Sunday 9 February

A reasonable day of sunshine and showers. Not too cold, not too windy. Enjoyed watching some of the Winter Olympics from Sochi, and been putting some more bulbs into the ground. These were already sprouting, so that will yield a colourful display in the next few weeks.

Saturday 8 February

What a lovely morning. Broad sunshine, just the odd shower, not much wind, it almost feels like spring. The only thing that gives the game away is the barometer. Did I see that right, 957 mbar (28.26 inches) and falling? The actual low pressure centre, located off Ireland, is estimated to have a pressure of 944 mbar, corroborated by a weatherstation in Donegal, Ireland, which is reading 948 mbar. Batten down the hatches in the south of England, this will give you a blow to remember - for all the wrong reasons.

In the afternoon, it turned grey and ominous from the south. Our rainfall radar was zapped by lightning in December, so can't check what's around. Oh well, never a dull moment in these islands, that's for sure.

In the evening, we found ourselves in the eye of the storm, located over the Isle of Skye, sporting a lovely 952 mbar as central pressure. The depression will move north, leaving us with westerly winds. If my reading of the weathermaps is correct, we (in the Western Isles) should be VERY wary of Tuesday, when a nasty little low with tightly packed isobars comes scooting by.

I have been checking my listings of Lewis WW1 casualties against CWGC entries, finding three with island connections that I had not previously located.