There is a bliss to be had when relaxing in a long, deep bath with a glass of wine and a view of the Cuillins. This is my daily treat as the field trip progresses.
There has to be a flip side to the two or three hours you might spend plodding over muddy sand, or negotiating a way over weedy rocks in persistent rain and wind to get to a ‘sheltered’ place at the water’s edge (I mean a spot with a calm aspect where marine life can exist with minimal disturbance). I have found the best way to achieve the latter without slipping is to use my stacked yellow buckets as a zimmer frame. It is very undignified but as safe a method I can find for doing something so foolish. All this in wet weather gear and stout wellies.
At Camas Croise we are entertained by Seb the 6-month old Labrador pup who has a fine time finding shells and tossing them about in the hope that someone will play with him.
Despite the weather we complete our tasks and as we haul our wet selves back to the car I am already looking forward to the soiree we have planned for the whole group at our house in Kyleakin.
We are a bumper 17 on this field trip ranging from experts to novices, dab hands and new members. We are going to start at 6 o’clock in order to cater for people with long journeys back to guesthouses. Because of Skye’s shape, journeys across the island can easily take 2 hours. We are keeping the meal ever so simple so its bangers and mash with green beans and I am in charge of making the largest pan of fried onions I’ve ever cooked but Rosemary and Sonia are chefs for the evening. Afterwards we serve apple pie, ice cream and cream. The Broadford Co-op has provided all our requirements and we work out afterwards that it cost £2.70 a head.
After the last guests have gone I stay at my microscope for a short while but I am already behind with my samples. And tomorrow’s shore is the biggie!