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

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

Tuesday, 9 October 2007

Lingering Summer Days....



It is getting to that lovely time of year again. The log fire roaring in the evenings, the Rayburn lit once again, radiating heat and the lovely smell of home baking throughout the house. I love the summer months, but as the autumn takes hold, and winter draws ever closer, you reach that stage where you are ready to spend time indoors by the fireside after a summer of outdoor living.

The whole island takes on a different feel, as the green and yellow coats of the summer months are replaced with the vivid rusty shades of autumn. The hills have a sharper more defined appearance, the sea a bold blue metal sheet, set against skies bursting with lilacs and purples. Everything looks so much more dramatic and ever more beautiful at this time of year, when the sun is lying low in the sky, casting its rays ever closer.

Just as I am waxing lyrical about tucking up indoors the weekend saw us heading for the beach complete with kids, dogs and BBQ! It was a beautiful day; the sun was splitting the skies, and lifting the autumn chill from the air. Pals had stayed over as it was our son’s birthday, and so we packed all the necessaries and headed across the farm to our nearest beach, situated beyond the distillery. It is a rocky, shingle beach, with old ramshackle boat houses from yesteryear, at least two of which belong to the happy farmer. They are sadly neglected and in need of some serious TLC, and so are going to become next summer’s project. We’ll get everyone on board for the stripping and painting complete with the necessary BBQs and driftwood fires.

We set up camp in one of the old boat sheds, placing the BBQ in among the lobster creels. The children set off to explore, coming back frequently, laden with shells from crabs and sea urchins, and bits of old pottery, weathered by the sea. Across the water
You could hear the roar of the stags on Jura, the rutting season has began, along with the distant bangs of the stalkers guns. It is an eerie howling sound the stags make, attracting the does and warning off other stags.There was further excitement when one of the children spied an otter on a nearby rock tucking into his recent catch, and then another scampered across the beach, heading across the shingle, before gracefully slithering into the sea. We sat skimming stones across the bay as the happy farmer took charge of the burgers.

Our tummies full we wandered home along the track, hoping that it won’t be too long until we get to BBQ again.

Until next time…

10 comments:

Suffolkmum said...

It sounds like something out of a novel where you think 'I bet no-one lives like that any more!' What a lovely day. i would love to see an otter. Very atmospheric writing about hearing the stags roaring.

Exmoorjane said...

Posie, that was gorgeous. As SM says, it does sound as if it's come from another, more innocent, time. What a magical place that you have the sea, the otters AND the stags roaring. Despite living on Exmoor I have never heard them (they also call it bolving round here) and have always wanted to.
Lovely lovely blog - glad you had such a great day. jxx

Hannah Velten said...

What an idyllic way to spend an autumn weekend - how lucky you are to have all that open space and wildlife on your doorstep. Also love Rayburns - had one when I lived in a tiny farmhouse. But it also heated the water and if the water wasn't run off during the day we would be woken up in the night by the sound of banging pipes - had to quickly run a bath or the pipes would have burst!!! Mootia x

lampworkbeader said...

It sounds lovely. As I look out at my sodden garden the only wildlife I can see is a sodden grey squirrel trying to force its way into the bird feeder.

Inthemud said...

Sounds idyllic, what a lovely day!

DJ Kirkby said...

I love otters so. Sounds like you had such a fab day.

UN PEU LOUFOQUE said...

Oh Posie Rosie from where i am sitting it sounds idyllic may I come and live in the beach shed please?

laurie said...

i agree--i love summer, but the transition into fall has so many cozy attributes. you mentioned a few--fires, and baking, and more vivid blues in the air and the sky...

also, candy corn. (my autumnal weakness.)

@themill said...

Sounds perfect. We hear the seals barking or whatever it is they do. Sounds quite eerie in the half light though.
The boat houses look like a fabulous project - there'll be a huge rental market for them as 'retreats'

Casdok said...

How truley lovely.