December was a challenging month for us. We lost livestock, I was poorly, the storms and bad weather were just relentless, worrying and damaging. Our wind turbine broke and it felt like a clinging to the wreckage surviving experience at times.
One of the interesting things about Rum is that when you are here it is almost as though nothing outside of Rum exists any more. It is such an intense place to be, so far away from the mainland, the ‘real world’, so caught up in it’s own dramas, politics, issues, life playing out that it is easy to lose focus on the wider world still out there and get far too Rum-centric. We all tend to only be the people we are right here right now today, so few of us know much about who people were before they came to Rum – where did they live? What did they do? What are their stories? Why are they here on Rum?
I sometimes struggle with that. I find it tough to be the only Home Educator (let alone only parent with children of Davies and Scarlett’s ages that live here all the time), the only family living like we do here off grid, outside of the village. I have many friends here who are wonderful people I adore and feel close to but at times all four of us miss friends who have known us for years, knew where we came from, knew us before we lived in a caravan on a muddy hill and only wore wellies. People who know our story and understand what led us here.
So the perfect antidote to a tough few weeks was a spontaneous and fairly last minute visit from friends to see out 2013 and welcome in 2014. We have celebrated the turning of the year with these friends many times over the years, along with many other getting togethers and fun times. They have had their own share of adventures and exciting times this year including a trip to Rum during the summer while they were on the road but are currently having some time saving up for and planning their next adventure so are not quite as free to head off on impromtu gallivants right now. But work schedules, holiday times and a lucky break in the weather all conspired in our favour and on Monday they arrived on the ferry for three nights.
It was just what we needed. Time off, lots of nice food and drink, lots of music, laughter, fun and silliness. Plenty of remembering past good times, plotting future plans and making memories right now. Several very late nights and a spot of over indulging aside I think we all feel very recharged and rebalanced and ready to meet 2014 full of anticipation for what adventures and experiences it might bring.
We waved them off on the ferry today having had a fabulous time. The static feels huge with just four people in it again, particularly as we made the decision to take the Christmas tree down early to make space for extra guests.