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South Uist – here at last

We’re glad we took the precaution of booking the ferry ahead as when we arrived at Uig, Skye to collect the tickets people enquiring about going across to the islands were being told there were no tickets available until Monday of the next week. It was drizzling so we headed for shelter in the nearest (and the only) pub. Skye beers on draught cheered us up and we had our evening meal in there too then headed back off to the B&B.

The ferry crossing was about as calm as you could get and there were a few sea birds around: Kittiwake, Fulmar, Gannet, Guillemot, Razorbill and the odd Puffin. We docked on time in Lochmaddy, North Uist and it felt good to be back in the islands again.

We headed to the estate agents and picked up the keys for our new house from Jinny then headed down to South Uist. The house hadn’t been lived in for just over 12 months so the first thing we did was open up all the doors and windows to give it a good airing out. We’ll be living without any furniture for 2 weeks so that’ll give us a chance to get any jobs done and also to do some exploring.

View from the rear of the house

View from the rear of the house

Our first sunset as residents of South Uist

Our first sunset as residents of South Uist

The next day we got down to sorting some of our jobs out, including painting the fence at the front as it had been sandblasted and well weathered, the previous owner told us he hadn’t given it a lick of paint for a couple of years.

Our first full day we headed out for a walk along the nearby beach and were treated to the sight of an otter resting on a rock, occasionally giving himself a good scratch and seemingly going to sleep, he wasn’t at all bothered by us as we sat on the sand dune and watched him. Great stuff!

Later on in the afternoon we had our first visitors, our lovely next door neighbours who brought us a loaf of home-baked bread. Yum!

Domestic chores but Ian looks happy enough

Domestic chores but Ian looks happy enough

I guess the harsh weather conditions will soon strip the paint from the wood again :-)

I guess the harsh weather conditions will soon strip the paint from the wood again :-)

Ian wasn’t doing too well as he got a couple of cleg (horsefly) bites – funny how they seem to prefer him to me these days, he tells me it’s because he’s gone soft in his old age :-) He was beginning to think he had some sort of problem with the circulation in his hands as they were all tingly – it took him a little while to realise that as he’d been painting he was brushing his hand in and out of a patch of stinging nettles. His final mishap that day was an encounter with a rat trap. I’d pointed them out to him on the day we arrived but today he decided to pick it up to see whether it was set. Oh dear, yes it was, and decided to unset itself on his fingers! I did advise him that anything like that you should poke with a stick a few times to make sure it wasn’t set – i thought that with him having been a boy scout he’d have known that. :-)

The lounge seems huge with no furniture in it

The lounge seems huge with no furniture in it

The airbed is fairly comfortable though

The airbed is fairly comfortable though

We headed out a few times to do some exploring. Loch Eynort is a very pleasant place.

Loch Eynort

Loch Eynort

Ian making friends with the locals

Ian making friends with the locals

As is Howmore

Howmore, looking towards the hills on the east side of South Uist

Howmore, looking towards the hills on the east side of South Uist

Ian had heard lots about Stornoway Black Pudding so felt he really ought to try it our for breakfast. He tells me it’s delicious!

Breakfast time at the picnic table

Breakfast time at the picnic table

Stornoway Black Pudding - the real thing. I'm sure the purists wouldn't have used quite so much HP sauce though ;-)

Stornoway Black Pudding - the real thing. I'm sure the purists wouldn't have used quite so much HP sauce though ;-)

We added a bird to our UK list this week as well as we heard that a Pacific Golden Plover had turned up nearby so we eventually went to find it.

We had the moth trap out and had just over 300 moths the first time and an incredible 444 the next time. There were lots of Garden Tigers, Smoky Wainscot, Antler, Goldspot and White-line Darts.

Garden Tiger's coming out thick and fast...

Garden Tiger's coming out thick and fast...

Chevron was new for us

Chevron was new for us

Beautiful Golden Y

Beautiful Golden Y

True Lover's Knot

True Lover's Knot

White-line Dart

White-line Dart

I don’t think the neighbours have quite got the hang of Ian’s sense of humour yet. When N dropped a giant, homegrown, courgette off for us saying “i hope you can do something with this” she looked just a tad taken-aback when Ian said “well i can think of lots of things but we’ll probably just eat it”. :-)

4 comments to South Uist – here at last

  • South Uist’s one of my favourite places. I have an aunt living in Loch Aynort so have spent quite a number of weeks over the years walking, kayaking, cycling and Birding up there. I’m always looking for new people to ring with so next time I’m up (not till early next summer now) I’ll have to give you a shout and see if you’d be up for some ringing.

    Aidan

  • MSS

    moth pics useful for troys ID – keep ‘em coming

    Iain will have to now take the next stage in black pudding love – which brand is best….

  • You’re always welcome to visit Katie – some great photo opportunities here, great birding and mothing too :-)

  • Looks awesome! Not at all jealous…