Posie's Blog. Tales of island life on a hebridean hill farm

Posie's Blog. Tales of island life on a hebridean hill farm

Monday, 3 September 2007

The 'jingly jangly' friend



I have been all out of sorts. The children went back to school a week last Thursday. The whole laid back life of lazy days, outings to beaches, visits from friends, and the endless freedom that only the long summer break really brings, has been kick started into a bustling routine of school bags, packed lunches, buses, and then silence, as the last one heads out of the door. The house feels so empty, that is until they come bursting through the door again at 4.00pm, leaving a trail of school bags shoes and discarded instruments in their wake. I hate it when the schools go back, especially the first few weeks, when everyone is adjusting once again to the routines that school life brings.....

The happy farmer took me out to a distillery for lunch to cheer me up, last week . It was a ‘mizzly’ week, with drizzle and low lying cloud, days when it doesn’t quite know whether it is summer or autumn. It was quiet travelling over to the distillery, no squabbling children in the car, arguing over which band we should be listening too, or moaning that we were heading out at all, we did miss them…..

The old kiln café was bustling with tourists, still enjoying their holidays. The island still has that lovely ‘holiday’ feel about it, just unfortunately for some, the holidays are definitely over. The café has a fantastic atmosphere; it is situated in one of the distillery warehouses, and has an old flagstone floor and a high ceiling of huge, solid, oak beams.


We had to wait a while to get seated, the happy farmer leaning against one of the old steel posts, threatening to start chatting to people, hoping to make them ‘slurp’ that soup a little quicker, and hurry off out, so we could get a seat. I managed to persuade him to stay put while I browsed the array of drams, in bottles of various ages and cask strengths, woollen pullovers, scarves and paintings on sale.

Once seated, the menu looked appetising, and just as our order arrived so did our ‘jingly jangly’ friend, that is his ‘blog name’ anyway, called thus, as he can never ever sit still, not even for a minute. He is a fascinating character; completely loop the loop, and great entertainment value, as well as being a good friend of ours. He arrived with some friends of his, so we all sat together. The friends were up from the Lake District, and are in charge of the company who are demolishing the Islay Hotel, which is now owned by our ‘jingly jangly’ friend. It is his latest and very exciting venture. Over the course of the next week the old hotel will be ‘raised to the ground’, apparently, finally all being pulled down at 10.00am next Saturday. The company doing the work have demolished a lot of these tall cooling towers around the country. It should be quite a sight, and will be a very welcome sight, as the hotel has stood in a dreadful derelict condition for many years now, proving a huge eyesore for all of the visitors and residents, this will very soon be a sight of the past. Our good friend has plans to rebuild the Islay Hotel and turn it once more into a thriving hub of activity at the heart of the island’s community.

We headed home, refreshed, and ready for the first child home to come racing through that door.

Until next time….

14 comments:

Cait O'Connor said...

Ah, you make me very envious of your island life. I loved your photo too. The pub sounds good too and the array of drams! Hope you are feeling better now, think, before you know it it will be half-term, do you get half- term? Then the C word, won't say it....! I used to love the holidays when my children were young and hated the start back time.

laurie said...

what a nice coincidence, to run into your friend.

and yes, it's such an unsettling time of year. by late september the new order will have taken hold.

lampworkbeader said...

Sounds like a good day out. It's lovely to meet up with friends unexpectedly. Your happy farmer sounds like a patient type. My man would never wait for a table and finds it hard to sit still when we actually get one.

ChrisH said...

Oh dear, horrid unnatural mother that I am I always used to be pleased when the girls went back to school! The trip to the distillery sounds very good - I'm a real fan of the peaty single malts myself - probably good I don't live on your island!

FunkyMunky said...

I so enjoy reading your blogs. I'm feeling a little strange myself at the moment as my daughter is starting nursery next week ... only for 3 afternoons a week, but I have a horrible feeling that things will never be quite the same again!
Your day out sounds very interesting ... as does your friend!

Pondside said...

Gorgeous photo - love all your photos and look forward to seeing them when I open your page.
I well remember missing the children so much in the first week of school and the feeling of a huge empty space in the back of the car as I did errands without them.
Your lunch sounds great - all the best ingredients - food, drink, a good location and friends of the jingly jangly sort.

Crystal Jigsaw said...

Our school starts back on Wednesday so I will probably be spending tomorrow panicking as I realise trousers no longer fit and school bag has been festering at the back of a wardrobe and growing mushrooms. A trip to the shop is also in need to buy items for the pack lunches for the rest of the week.

Crystal xx

Tattie Weasle said...

Dreading the return down here in Suffolk - I hate the school run and he's only been there a year!(+ that was not even full time)Perhaps it is more to do with me re my own school days? Well The Boy is excited so that's the good thing. I'll get back to sowing on nametapes and making amends...

toady said...

Lovely photo urh what is it, a lighthouse?
Toady

Exmoorjane said...

How funny - that's the second time I've heard the word 'mizzle' in a day....I'd never heard it before. But it mizzled here yesterday!
Crikey, yours go back early, don't they? I am feeling cross with myself because, once again, it feels like I didn't make the most of the summer. But sounds as if you did - which is fabulous. Nice farmer suggesting that lunch...

muddyboots said...

wonderful photo, and, well, you've made me envious of your day. ;ucky you!

WesterWitch/Headmistress said...

I always find it so odd when the Scottish children have returned to school and holiday time is over and yet there is still a holiday atmosphere because the rest of teh British Isles hasn't gone back yet - somehow it always jangles for me . . . so glad when we are all back in sync again.

It will be wonderful when the eyesore has gone . . . hate it when things are left to rot and look ugly. Then again there has been a lot of buying up of old crofts, tearing them down and building ugly new houses around here . . . feel it is not in sympathy with the area at all . . .more jangling.

How lovely to see your jittery friend . . . doesn't he make you feel jittery too though.

Posie Rosie said...

The photo is of Carraig Fhada lighthouse, it is one of the island's light houses and is near to Port Ellen.

@themill said...

Unfortunately my farmer is still on his combine so sandwiches in the cab is as far 'out to lunch' as I get!