High Winds and No Tide Lines!

It has been a week of ups and downs and that’s not just the boats on the high waves. The Loganiar flights continue to land in the high winds, we’ve had gusts recorded up over 70mph and a 40 feet wave just off our shores. The Isle of Lewis ferry on the other hand has been sitting in Castlebay since Tuesday night and headed off to Oban this morning with the hope that it has brought back over some full fat milk because this week we got to the shelves late and there was only SKIMMED (aka blue water) milk left! Please please don’t tell my Dad I’ve drinking skimmed milk because in his eyes the only milk worth drinking is the stuff that used to float to the top of his glass milk bottle.

So with high winds comes big waves and earlier in the week Jackson went out alone with his camera as I’ve been a bit under the weather with a flu bug that’s going around the island. And was I jealous when he came back with these shots!!!??? not in the slightest…… mutter mutter


So with high winds/waves, we had no ferries, no whole fat milk, no electricty/heating today and we sadly had no Tide Lines playing in Castlebay on Saturday, so there was a fair few disappointed folks on the island including us. The way of island life, I’m afraid.

But I have good news too. I applied for two vacancies recently on Barra, one was for Youth Worker - Opportunites for All (4 hours per week) and a Relief Care Worker (2 hours per week) working with adults with support needs. I was delighted to get both positions!!!! Looking forward to starting both in the New Year. #silveremployment

Other good news is Thai is feeling so much better and back to her bouncy self thankfully. She was a poor wee soul so after looking up on internet the best way to get a dog drink she was revived with several bowls of water mixed with small pieces of finely shredded cooked chicken!! Phew…..

She has been keeping me company on the couch along with my hot drinks, tissues and knitting needles. Now I can’t disclose what I’m actually knitting for, it is a secret mission but my themed colours are green and white (Barra Flag), Blue for the Skies/seas and Purple for the heather. All will be revealed next week!


On the home front #teamPJP were out filming various music projects for East Ayrshire Council and I have been editing clips filmed around Ayrshire (excerpts from Tam O Shanter) for South Ayrshire Council Blue Bunnet Trail, performed by Ken O’Hara. And here’s Ken getting to perform the poem in its entirety….


Today thankfully we got out of the house, wrapped up with four layers of clothings, hankies in my pocket and headed to the north of island. It seems like ages since we were popping round frequently to visit Irene & Archie in Crannag cottage, so it was great to capture some wonderful light between the hail showers.


Other great news is that Irene and I are going to be exhibiting in Castlebay Hall on 1st, 2nd 3rd and 4th of June next year. The exhibition will be “Catpuring the Hebridean Spirit” and will include Irene’s paintings, a couple of brand new Barra films, premiering a music/art video, photographs by both Jackson and Archie, an art competition for the pupils of Castlebay School (full details to be developed in New Year) and of course some of the stones and shells I have collected along the way! Together with a few bits and pieces we have found on the Baraa & Vatersay beaches. Including today’s find - some lovely bright blue rope which Jackson & Thai were left to fetch as I had left it in the sea to remove some of the sand and of course it got swept away! Revenge for the chasing of the pink box when he was collecting cockles…..


Although we have had bad weather which can disrupt day to day life on the island, stormy skies also bring the most amazing rainbows. So between the showers where Jackson, Thai and I, all sheltered in the sand dunes under Jackson’s waterproof poncho we were blessed with this sight!

Caturing rainbows between hail storms

Caturing rainbows between hail storms

We had to stop quickly as we drove up at the airport to capture the light and clouds across the runway and as you can see the storms were around us but inbetween it was beautiful blue skies. Only on Barra!

Barra Airport

Barra Airport

So what do we do when we are stuck inside on the wild and wet days, when I’m not editing there’s alway the challenge of board games and we’ve plenty of them to keep us amused

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Our art classes with the lovely Cheryl have now come to an end and it has been great fun getting messy with paint. Here is my final effort for the winter term, and it was inspried by a painting Chris D. did last week of a similiar lighthouse, I just added brighter colours!


Finally I loved sitting out on Father John’s beach (we were told recently it was the name given to this beach, I’ve yet to have it verfified though) on Vatersay watching the winds were blowing back the spray which just created a wonderful mesmerising effect. Another beach Jackson had to haul me off to get back home out of the cold!! I could probably have been found in Janaury frozen to the spot if he hadn’t intervened!!

No real wildlife pictures this week but the weather forecast looks to be brighter next week so we’ll keep our fingers crossed I feel better and we get out more. So it is only gulls and coos to finish with……night night folks xx

Eileen Frater