Monday, 31 August 2009

Swallows flying

Swallows flying
I've been trying to take a photograph of flying swallows all summer and then this one flew into the frame just as I pressed the button.

There are a lot of swallows around still being fed by the adult birds so either this is a late or second hatching.

Swallows flying


Swallows flying

Fledgling blackbird

Fledgling blackbird 1/6
and this fledgling blackbird was certainly not yet streetwise.

I was able to get very close on several occasions while it was looking the other way and then take photos. I'm sure it could hear the 'click' of the camera but couldn't work out where the sound was coming from.

Rooftop robin

Robin 1/6
this robin decided to take a rooftop perch and watch where I was (and where the food was)

Robin 1/6

Birds feeding 1/5

Birds feeding 1/5
and other youngsters were hoping that I wasn't really watching as they approached the food on the bird table.

Birds feeding


Birds feeding

Robin

Robin
in between showers of rain yesterday, I managed to get out into the garden and take some photographs of the garden birds.

This cheeky sparrow was proving rather elusive and hid behind the log.

Sunday, 30 August 2009

Duck passenger

I didn't take a photograph- well I couldn't really stand beside someone's car and take a picture of the passengers- could I?

It drove past me and I had to look twice, a white duck was sitting on the back seat looking out the window at me. My passenger wouldn't/couldn't believe me but after taking a look agreed; there was definitely a duck looking back through the car window.

... and it didn't stop there. A goose was sitting in the front passenger seat ! (although I didn't see this myself).

There must have been a good reason but I can't think what it might have been.

Monday, 24 August 2009

Loch Leven

Loch Leven
with the reflection of the hills, sky and the little wooden boat.

Abandoned boat

Abandoned boat
I'm not quite sure who owns this boat but I've watched it sadly deteriorating over a few years.

Slate sheds

Slate sheds
near the Isles of Glencoe hotel at Ballachulish.

These sheds are very impressive, built from the slate that was quarried in the village for so long.

Loch Leven

Loch Leven
from Mamore Lodge

For the first time ever I ventured up this steep single-track road towards the impressive building at the top.

The view is fantastic although rather dark in this photograph. I decided not to edit it.

Willow herb

Willow herb
this willow herb is seeding beside a traffic queue.

Spreading well, I should imagine.

Sunday, 23 August 2009

Wildlife sightings

Wildlife sightings
posted on the notice board at one of the two cruise boats' offices.

Gairloch trip boat

Gairloch trip boat
sitting in the harbour waiting on the steady stream of people who appeared to be booking for the next sailing.

Loch Broom sunset 10/26

Loch Broom sunset 10/26
and then looking the other way out of the loch where the sun was setting.

Loch Broom sunset 4/26

Loch Broom sunset 4/26
Even the locals were out taking photographs.

Perhaps it was the storm that was giving this fantastic light. On this photograph we're looking down on Ullapool which just seemed to be in the spotlight.

Ullapool clock

Ullapool clock
how could I not have noticed this before?

Ullapool ferry terminal

Ullapool ferry terminal
but Calmac's Isle of Lewis wasn't due in until much later.

Ullapool pier looking out

Ullapool pier looking out
with a storm forecast it was starting to look blustery and darker.

Ullapool fishing boats

Ullapool fishing boats
and then sat looking at the boats while we ate fish and chips.

View from Ptarmigan

View from Ptarmigan
we booked into this nice B&B just outside Ullapool

Suilven

Suilven
and then the mist cleared and it became visible

Suilven

Suilven
appearing through the mist

It was impossible to capture this view on a photograph, it was almost eerie.

Fish and chips

Dancing seagull
so who has the best supper and who will give me some.

Perhaps if I do a dance someone will notice me?

Friday, 21 August 2009

Storm approaching 14/14

Storm approaching 14/14

this is the last in the series of 14 pictures taken as we drove into the storm.

The light was amazing and we needed sunglasses but all around was getting darker. The forecast was a thunder storm but it never arrived.

Click on the picture to see the full series

Steps to beach at Shieldaig

Steps to beach
I really like these steps, they are at regular intervals along the beach and nicely built of stone.

Cannon at Shieldaig

Cannon at Shieldaig
this cannon faces out over the bay and I have no idea why.

Even a search on a well-known search engine hasn't provided me with the information so, if you know... please can you share the information with me?

Tuesday, 18 August 2009

Bamse statue in Montrose

Bamse statue in Montrose
this is statue of Bamse (1937 - 1944), a St Bernard who was an official crew member onboard the Norwegian crewed minesweeper 'Thorodd'

A similar statue is sited in Honningsvag and the two statues look across the sea towards each other.

Sunday, 16 August 2009

2010 all change

The news this week is mixture of good and sad. As we know; Saga Rose retires later this year.

The good news is that Saga will introduce 'Saga Pearl II' ex.Astoria on a series of ex.UK cruises. cruise schedule

Marco Polo
The other news is that Marco Polo is cruising ex.UK under the banner of Cruise & Maritime Voyages along with Ocean Countess.

Saga ships

Well, once again, I missed a Saga ship. This time Saga Ruby was in Portree yesterday but I decided against going to see her.

There are a lot of visitors around (which is great) but it does also mean journeys take longer and ferries are busier. The forecast was also bad and, not only that, but the weather also looked bad. Even if we had gone over to Skye, I doubt if I would have got very good photographs.

Then this morning I looked at the AiS and found she had sailed down through the Sound of Mull during the evening. This is something I didn't expect so once again missed her!

Saga Rose is in Kirkwall next week- the weather is looking good but it is a very long way to go to see her. Then again, I never have seen her. Watch this space.

Thursday, 13 August 2009

Busy ferry

Isle of Mull
I suppose the sun brought the passengers out on deck but Calmac's Isle of Mull does look very busy today

Mona Lisa and Isle of Mull

Mona Lisa and Isle of Mull
just outside Oban Bay. Mona Lisa is moored and Calmac's Isle of Mull has just left the bay

Mona Lisa's

Mona Lisa passenger launches
launches were bringing passengers ashore in Oban

Ballachulish tree

Tree
this tree is spectacular

keeping watch

Birds on Ballachulish golf course

Small aircraft

Small aircraft
circling overhead

Birds on Ballachulish golf course

Birds on Ballachulish golf course
found lunch

Butterfly

Butterfly
this butterfly hardly sat still for long enough to focus the camera

Looking for lunch?

Birds on Ballachulish golf course
looking for lunch

Wednesday, 12 August 2009

Raven's dinner

Raven
this raven was spotted trying to eat a small communications satellite dish.

It kept returning so the satellite must have tasted good !

Oosterschelde flag

Oosterschelde
of course, being Dutch, she was flying the Netherlands flag.

Oosterschelde plaque

Oosterschelde
this descriptive plaque giving a brief history of the ship was displayed onboard for a steady number or visitors.

Oosterschelde

Oosterschelde
seen again in Oban yesterday (Tuesday)- at the North Pier this time.

Cruising as a living historic ship, this 3-masted schooner was built in 1918.

Monday, 10 August 2009

Thai interiors

Thai interiors
this was one of my favourite stands at Moy Highland fair and I've bought several of these lovely wooden hand-crafts from Husband and wife team Sanan and Emma.

West Highland Yachting Week

West Highland Yachting Week
Oban to Tobermory race.

The yachts were visible almost as soon as they appeared out of Oban Bay and remained visible as they approached Tobermory but my many photographs turned out to be rather poor.

Just to prove I was sitting on the old pier at Lochaline taking photographs- here is one of the better (but not good) views

Tuesday, 4 August 2009

RNLI- returning home

RNLI- returning home
and we spotted both lifeboats returning to Anstruther from Crail

Please read these RNLI posts in reverse order and don't forget to give a donation to the RNLI

Crail lifeboat day

Crail lifeboat day
the lifeboats attracted lots of visitors so lets hope they raised a lot of funds to help pay for the service

RNLI- back onboard

RNLI- back onboard
and climbed back onboard