It's been a while. One heck of a while. Any drafts that I had in the pipeline have been lost when the old Dell packed up, along with seven months of photographs. I'd like to be able to tell you that it began smoking out of every port and the drives wailed like banshees but instead it just woke up one day and said “You know that stuff that I used to do for you, well I'm not going to be doing that any more.” It's your loss, you selfish sack of rusty circuit boards. You're the one going in the skip! So despite the vacuum of testament, I'll try my very best to pick up the narrative.
|As manager I'm responsible for publicity shots too|
You find me still in Sanday, still being a lazy good-fer-nuffin'. I am, however, being less good at that particular gig as, in addition to the stuff I was doing at the end 2014, I also assumed the management role within the bus company in 2015. Now, after almost a year in post I can reveal that the company is still in operation so I can't be quite the 'kiss of death' that I suspected that I might be.
|OMG! They're both out. How did that happen?|
So what's new?
You know that I don't like change, so the answer is: very little.
For some bizarre reason, I keep ramping up the stress. It's been over two years since I qualified as a pool lifeguard which meant that I needed to be reassessed. At least it means that I get a free dip in the pool to do some fun stuff, but being able to tie slings, recite rules and regulations and recognise and assess health issues scares the hell out of me. I like knowing what I know, which I admit isn't much, as it comforts me. I concur with the wisdom of the genius Homer Simpson who observed that when he learnt anything new that it invariably pushed something else out. What happens if the thing I forget is how to breath? I think that I'd regret not remembering that. Probably not for long.
|Not even MORE kittens!|
There has been excitement on the island concerning the long anticipated opening of the new Sinclair's store, a brand new, purpose-built unit in a prime location at the end of the pier road. With aisles wide enough for trolleys, it is something hitherto quite unheard of in these parts. However, as somebody who does practically all of his shopping on the island, a somebody with big eyes and voracious apetites, I don't doubt that I would have significantly more cash in my wallet if there was still a counter-service store on Sanday. I am guilty of being far too zealous at self-service, especially when one store insists on keeping cakes by the till and the other the pic 'n' mix. It's a wonder that neither has had to resort to double doors for customers to squeeze in and out of. Well, for this particular patron at least.
Having a beach on our doorstep has yet to get boring. Opportunities to hit the water in the kayak remain a rare joy, but Bay of Lopness is, nevertheless, the gift that keeps on giving. Mostly, it gives up bruck. Although this makes me dispair of my species, it does offer an insight to their disgusting behaviour and offers all the exercise one could ever need when picking it all up. And every now and again, the tides bring in a treat. Often it'll be footwear that I can share on the lost shoe society facebook page. Other times it'll be wooden pallets or even something more substantial like the day that saw four pieces of constructional timber lattice wash in. Sometimes it'll be wildlife. In wild weather, coastal seabirds can find themselves stranded on land, an environment to which they are entirely unsuited. It's at times like these that the poor things need a homo-sapien who's not afraid to make a tit of himself in order to scare them back into their aquatic home.
|A silly Guillimot|
After four years I have at last flown on the 'peedie' plane. Not once, but twice. Gail and I celebrated our silver wedding anniversary in a style that our financial situation could hardly permit but given that we have a long time to be poor, it is essential to our sanity that we occasionally cast our poverty into stark relief. We enjoyed a splendid four-poster bedroom at the Orkney Hotel in Kirkwall and a fantastic repaste at the same venue. It was Hallowe'en but having the restuarant all to oursleves was a surprise. It is everybody else's loss that they weren't sharing such excellent food and hospitality. The return flight to Sanday also took us the farthest North we have ever been (on any continent) as it flew via North Ronaldsay. It also allowed us an aerial view of our 'estate' from the window on the way back to the Lady aerodrome.
|There's a little, pale blob the other side of the loch. That's us|
With Gail's 'half ton' landmark birthday Early in the new year, it looked like the 'never never' would be financing another indulgence. As a result, with the lady in question tirelessly reinforcing the 'lazy student' cliche, I was just going to have to put a few more shifts in!