On the 12th June 1991 I passed my driving test. Over the 25 years since I have always owned a vehicle – my first was a bright yellow mini and I remember being so thrilled at the independence and adventures the car and the ability to drive it afforded me. These days I rarely drive, although we have two (working) cars but this week I added another 200 miles or so to my personal tacometer as Scarlett and I had a couple of nights off the island for a brace check up for her at the dentist and we used the local car club car. The road from Mallaig to Fort William is one of the most twisty, turny roads in the UK I reckon, certainly one of the most long and winding I’ve ever driven. In the dark, particularly at dawn or dusk it is a daunting drive with deer waiting to leap out infront of you. In wet or frosty conditions it is a scary drive but in daylight, in nice dry weather it’s a very enjoyable drive. The last time we hired the car we bought a Proclaimers cd from a charity shop and on the basis that we had been delighted to find a Cher cd in the cd player once (driving through the Highlands radio signal is very patchy) we left it in the car. It was still in there so Scarlett and I enjoyed singing along to that a lot. If you have seen How I Met Your Mother you will further understand the joy of 500 miles on a road trip.
We were off Rum for less than 48 hours, spending one night at a hotel and one with local friends, watching TV, eating fast food, doing a big supermarket shop and having ice creams. We kept pace with the steam train heading back to Mallaig, having been stuck at a level crossing while it passed us and waved at some of the passengers.
Back at the croft we’ve been dismantling pallets for nursery pens for the birds – three hens with chicks already penned, another two sitting on clutches of eggs who we’ll move once they hatch, three broody ducks found on nests, two geese and the turkey. This could be the best year for rearing birds ever.
Regular strawberry harvesting, peas and currants are not far behind and the tomatoes are ready to be pinched out and need a comfrey feed.
It’s not all work though.. the trampoline has been bounced on for hours every day, we set up a hammock I bought last year and we had a lovely evening at the shop in the breezy sunshine last night with friends.
I’ve been fiddling with the shop layout, moved a few things around and added a couple of new lines including hand painted glasses. They have quite a midge heavy theme…
I taught myself how to make letters on friendship bracelets but unless I get a lot quicker that will not be a cost effective line to sell, Scarlett and I made some more bath fizzers and more parts arrived to play with feather crafts and the hot glue gun. I spent some time sitting in the sunshine with a hammer and set of stamps and made a pile of Isle of Rum stamped metal discs to use in keyrings.
Today was the 23rd anniversary of Ady and I becoming a couple. 23 years of being the Nic half of Nic & Ady. I cannot imagine finding anyone better to be the other half.