Disturbance Level – minimal

November 24, 2018

Things have been pretty hectic this year [2018], and regular readers of this blog will have noticed that I’ve been behind with my updates. With our yacht winterised, we booked a week in Seatown [Gardenstown] at the very last-minute …to squeeze in some much-needed R&R later in November.

While not technically afloat, the cottage that we went to is about as close as it’s possible to get to the sea; with the seawall doubling as a single track road that runs along the front. As we stayed at the very same cottage last year, we knew what to expect. Nonetheless, driving along the seawall in the dark isn’t for the faint-hearted.

It wasn’t warm, however the weather was better than expected and we managed to get out and about every day. On the few occasions that it rained, we retreated inside with the coal fire to keep us toasty. Most evenings we nipped outside in the dark, with a drink in hand to experience the waves crashing against the seawall, and peer through the darkness to the navigation lights bobbing around just offshore.

We visited many little coastal villages including Portsoy, and the lovely Sandend. We typically ate out at lunchtime, including treating ourselves to one of our favourites, Cullen Skink …which was okay, but fell a tad short of our expectations given that we were actually in Cullen and the restaurant claimed to serve the world’s best Cullen Skink. However, the waves down on the beach were pretty awesome that day [above].

Awesome, but not destructive like the waves that hit Tenerife that week. I mention this, because we had been booked-up for a fortnight in Tenerife that very week, but the travel agent cancelled our trip at the last-minute …hence our quicker than expected return to Gardenstown.

Similarly, we didn’t expect to be back in Pennan so soon, however we enjoyed being back. Having changed mobile operators since our last visit, I managed to get a signal and called the phone box. It was reassuring to hear it ring, and now I know that on the [rare] occasions that I call from back home …I am actually making the phone box ring in ‘Ferness’.

As for the aurora borealis; I was much better prepared on this trip, having downloaded a real-time ‘Aurora Watch’ app to my iPhone. Unfortunately my early optimism was built on shakey foundations that ebbed away with the mobile signal. The nearest signal was over 500m away from our broadband-less cottage, and so the text message that I would receive when the northern lights would be visible at our location …would never be received.

Oh well, looks like a trip to Reykjavik is on the cards!

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