Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Saturday and Sunday, and a quick visit to Monday

Saturday is the day that most people who are on holiday in Harris leave or arrive.  Most of the leavers go out on the early ferry. Many of the arrivers come on the later ferry.  This leaves quite a bit of the day when there are few holidaying people on the island.

This makes the roads (which are seldom really, really busy) very quiet.

So we all took ourselves out exploring again.  We went to St Clement's Church in Rodel, at the southern end of the island and pottered around inside it and then went on a little round walk around Rodel.




We went to Leverburgh to look at the ferry port (ferries to North Uist), where we found a fish and chip shop in a bus


Then we went to the Art Cafe in Skoon, where they did us magnificent cheese platters - with Rice cakes for Paul.

Then we made another attempt on the beach we went to earlier in the week.  We got there and the weather was overcast but not raining.  By the time we had got to the top of the first sand dune it was raining with persistence.  We abandoned the attempt and went home!

Sunday, however, dawned bright and shiny.  So we made a third, this time successful attempt to get to the beach.  We walked the sand dunes and wandered around on the beach and had a good long walk.  Paul had a quick swim. We sat on the rocks in the sunshine.  Then we went to the old, coffin road and had a short walk along that.  The geology of the east side of Harris is very rocky so there can be no cemeteries there. They are all in West Harris.  In earlier years, of course, there wasn't an motorised way of getting the dead from east to west, other than by carrying them.  The coffin road has cairns every mile or so for resting the coffins on while the bearers had a breather. It was very interesting and quite easy walking, but The Builder jiggered his knee going over a stile so we made it a short walk before returning home for our last dinner and a last gaze out the windows.

We saw lots of wildlife while we were in Scotland.  Otters, seals, rabbits, sheep, more sheep and a few more sheep.  We have seen many different types of gulls, and puffins, redshanks, skylarks, wheat ears, great north divers, Arctic terns (who tried to drive us off the beach - and succeeded!), all sorts of other birds. And on that last walk along the coffin road, we looked up and there, soaring high above us was a sea eagle.  Such an exciting sight.

We took the early ferry back to Skye yesterday morning (no interesting wildlife from the boat, but I recommend the CalMac ferry breakfast), then Paul and Carol between them drove us back to their place where we collected the car and came on home. The distance from Uig to Loxley is roughly the distance from Sydney to Melbourne, so it was a marathon driving session! We stopped for lunch in the Real Food Cafe (where we had had lunch on the way up; it's a fish and chip cafe which does gluten free and vegetarian options as well. I highly recommend the gluten free fish. The batter is wonderful). Then we didn't really stop again until we got to Loxley.  I think we were all very glad to see a loo when we arrived at the house :-D

Click on the sea to get to the full photo album





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