Island at the Edge

Island at the Edge
The Gathering, Cable Bay, Colonsay

Thursday, 7 February 2013

'Hold on to your hats boys'!

Kapitein and I were down at Colonsay 'International' Airport this morning to collect our freight, (we have guests arriving at our B & B). When much to our surprise, a rather unusual sight greeted us.
Of late we have had some amazing winds here, westerly and north westerly, directly from the Atlantic, storm force of course, but we didn't expect to see this latest piece of flotsam and jetsam that must have been blown in - its usually fishing floats from the Canadian and American east coast fleets! Because our airstrip is on the west side of our wee island, Colonsay, overlooking the Atlantic and the next stop to the west is Canada, then we thought that 'Mikey' and Buffalo Joe - Buffalo Airways, may be missing someone? Had they sent one of their 'Rampy's' to see how Hebridean Air Services operate here in the Hebrides?

A Rampy arrives in Colonsay
As avid viewers of 'Ice Pilots' we recognised the 'Buffalo' reflective jacket (safety is paramount when out on the Apron), but this 6 foot tall, blonde Rampy was even wearing a Buffalo Airways hat! But, more importantly, can she fly the Islander plane! I'm not so sure...

How on earth did this Rampy end up on Colonsay? Was it the wind, or was it Petit paquet par avion?

We will have to see how this newest recruit works out, else we may have to send them back to Yellowknife! Buffalo Joe and Mikey - you had better 'Hold on to your hats boys' if this Rampy is returned to you, they could be a bit of a handful by all accounts!

Other news...
We have received our latest delivery of wool (via the plane of course) and we are delighted with the quality.
The Blackface wool is a wonderful shade of 'Oatmeal' and is available in DK or Aran weight.
We also have a new line in wool, it is Blackface X Blue Face Leicester, in a fabulous ecru, also available in DK and Aran weight.
And finally, we have some extra special Hebridean wool, available also in DK and Aran weight,
which is very, very soft indeed so is suitable for babies or those who like a 'softer feeling' wool next to their skin! Woolly knickers may be the next design project!
I hope to list the new wool on our website later today, but in the meantime, if you can't wait, contact us.
I was talking to a knitter the other day, who reminded me of the value of woollen clothing in the winter. When wool gets wet, it still keeps you warm, in contrast, man made fabrics and yarn which, when soaked, makes you feel cold. So it is logical to knit with wool!

Snow hunt...
Little Miss No No (now Little Mrs No No) and Gem came to visit. They arrived on the ferry after a snowy journey on the mainland.
Isle of Mull arriving at Colonsay
It was delightful to see Mrs and Gem. We had a super few days together, Kapitein was equally thrilled to see them. With the promise of long hikes to places they had not yet visited here, that was quickly moved to the back burner as Kapitein had happened a catastrophe with his vehicle.
The keys were jammed in the ignition the week before our visitors were due. However, that Friday ferry was cancelled - so the AA & Landrover recovery man couldn't make it. But, he duly arrived the Friday following the arrival of Mrs & Gem. What a lovely guy, (not Kapitein - just in case there's any misapprehension - 'cos Kapitein is by far the loveliest of old salty dogs) 

The likeness to Kapitein is uncanny!
The AA man changed the ignition barrel and hey presto, Kapitein was mobile again. 

When Mrs & Gem arrived,  I did spot snow on Jura, so that was it, no snow (as forecast) on Colonsay, I had to go off to find some!

We flew off on the Saturday flight with Hebridean Air to seek out the snow. 

Little Mrs No No & Gem aboard the Islander plane
We had a wonderful flight, cruising at around 5,000 feet, even flying over the Saturday morning ferry.
Our train journey was fantastic, and yes, I saw some snow!

But, Little Mrs No No & Gem had other plans. A 'shop till you drop' visit to Glasgow!!
I think we visited every shopping centre in the vicinity of our hotel (which by the way was fantastic) I think Little Mrs No No should be a 'personal shopper'! Gem and I were exhausted.

We said our goodbye's but, getting home for me was a problem to say the least. Storm force winds (which may have blown in the Rampy from Yellowknife) were engulfing Colonsay. Cancelled and turned back ferries were causing havoc with travel plans (not just here on Colonsay but all over the Western Isles). I thankfully arrived home on the following Friday.

We had extra special visitors last year to the Homestead, who sought me out to do a knitting course. Cate and Benj were visiting Colonsay as part of a 'round the UK' sailing trip. A delightful couple (I hope Cate has finished her project).
Here is a link to their blog, happy reading...

So far this year, we already have bookings for residential knitting courses here on Colonsay from as far afield as Canada, New Zealand, America and Australia. We are very excited to meet our International visitors. Will keep you posted...

Our company Hebridean Isles Trading Company is going from strength to strength!
We had a four page write up in Coast Magazine last year in the October edition, all about our knitting courses.
Then issue 56 of Yarnwise Magazine a great read for all you fellow knitters out there.
Then we got a mention in the Touchdown Newsletter issue 3.Touchdown issue 3

For all of you interested in all things aeronautical (and more) from Oban Airport, here is the latest edition of Touchdown issue 4

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