A good night’s sleep and it’s time to drive down to Oban to catch our ferry. Not too long to wait and we board the ‘Isle of Lewis’ ferry.
We have been on this particular ship before – very nice tartan carpeting. The only problem is we are now travelling dog-class, with hard flooring and not-so-comfortable seats. Poor old Alfie – he is so wound up and nervous that as soon as Peter puts him down he starts poo-ing without us noticing – that is until I start slipping on the floor! Luckily Peter has brought some kitchen towel with him and the ‘wet-ones’. As other dog owners look on sympathetically, Pete cleans up and I mutter something like ‘it’s his first sea trip…’
Alfie spends most of the voyage on Peter’s lap. Maybe not a sea-dog then… We’re soon off and I note the quantity of ‘white horses’ with some nervousness but the ship proceeds slowly but surely with not too much sideways movement. We pass the island of Lismore with its distinctive lighthouse.
Of course we can’t do what we usually do – go into the restaurant for a pleasant meal – so we make do with a Twix and a drink. There is a large TV on the wall but with no sound or even any sub-titles, so we watch BBC1 from Doctors through to Pointless trying to guess what people are saying or, even better, making it up ourselves…
Some people behind us start to make excited noises and I am just in time to capture this dolphin and baby jumping through the waves. Magical.
We had been told the trip should take five and a half hours but we have obviously made good time as we approach Castlebay at about half past six pm.
No sooner are we safely back in Madge when the stern opens and the ramp goes down – all in a day’s work for the excellent crew. It feels as if we had never left Barra as we follow others up the hill and turn right. The sun is breaking through but you can tell it had been raining earlier from the random pools of water on the road. There is a magical light that you often get after rain and I manage to take lots of photos through the smeary windscreen.
Has it really been two whole years since we were travelling these narrow roads?
Angus greets us on arrival at Croft no.2 and catches us up on all the news over the past two years. Michael was now working with his Dad on the fishing boat.
The site is quite full with motorhomes and caravans but our space at the front facing the sea has been left apparently for us! A bit slopey to the side but Peter has his chocks and some planks of wood just in case.
The sun is just setting and it’s 10.30pm. The lights are twinkling over on Eriskay and it’s wonderful to be back.