Silent Slice of Skye Heaven

Scenery on the main road to Portree

11 August 2012

Another threatening-to-be-grim day, so we cracked on with boiled eggs and double espresso (adults) or a big mug of UHT milk (only minxes can face this) for breakfast. It took us ages to get going because all 3 minxes needed showers, one at a time, waiting in queues before and afterwards. We were all grouchy from accumulated lack of sleep so snarled and grumped a lot.

Black Cuillins over Camas Malag

After the previous day’s sights zooming down the south-east side of Skye, we wanted to see a little more, so set off again via the Road Bridge. And again, we used the drawn-with-a-Mars-bar rubbish tourist map. This time, we decided to follow our noses and just go where the scenery looked most interesting. However, very rapidly we found ourselves on a tiny little track road with no passing places. In a car with verylow profile tyres. Doh. Looking for somewhere to turn, we came across a big, ugly old quarry. Rounding the next corner, we discovered

Red and Black Cuillins over Camas Malag

Camas Malag: the track opened out into a kind of wild camping field. Instead of turning, I got out and had a snoop around just in case the promised sandy beach was just out of sight (it wasn’t – the map lied again).

The world’s most scenic picnic spot. Maybe.

The first thing that hit me was the utter, deep, profound SILENCE. The faint baahing of the sheep carried across in the wind, but that was it. I felt apologetic unleashing the minxes, but what else could I do? They paused long enough for me to jam sunhats on little blonde, fluffy heads, and off they zoomed to the shoreline, as if the sea was one big minx-magnet. Mini Minx showed a natural aptitude for bouldering (oh no – shields up…) while her sisters wanted to play at Rescue the Beautiful Princess with me. It’s been a looooong time since I flexed my

My bouldering baby

imagination muscles, but I had no choice – listening to Midi role-play 7 or 8 parts in a progression of sillier voices was high entertainment.

After tiring of playing on pebbles and all 3 minxes doing their synchronised poo (why can’t they all want to go in the morning when we’re within walking distance of a flushing toilet, soap and water…?!) we had a picnic in probably the most scenic picnic spot on Earth. We went for a little walk further along the track uphill. The minxes happily clambered over every boulder in sight until I spotted one at the side of the track with bits of balled-up toilet tissue at its base. It didn’t take much investigation to realise that my first suspicion was right – someone had pooed right at the base, wiped their lazy bum, and just left their detritus there. Disgusting! I know that sometimes you’ve just got to go (I’ve got 3 kids… I know! I know!) but it only takes a few seconds to go a bit further off-track. I realise that not everyone carries around nappy sacks or poly bags like I do, but would it have been so difficult to at least have attempted to bury it? I’m not expecting latrine depths, here, just a bit of an attempt to get rid of toilet tissue? Obviously not. Obviously that person believes that their personal comfort and convenience is of supreme importance; certainly enough to litter and poison a beautiful landscape and put my kids at risk of illness!

What a sight for sleep-deprived eyes! Thank goodness for burners and French coffee pots

We decided to move on and see a little more of Skye. We drove to Portree and had an ice-cream (aye – yet another ice-cream!) and picked up more provisions. The minxes saw the pastel-painted houses on the seafront. I suggested that they might be a bit like those in Balamory? They scoffed at silly mummy – that was a few islands over the way!

Tired and fractious, we went back to the campsite to cook up a classic dinner of Pasta ‘n’ Sauce, engage in the ritual fight of getting the kids to bed, and sit and read the last of the The Girl Who Kicked The Hornets

Mission Accomplished

Nest (I very rarely read fiction: no time and no motivation, but I made an exception for the Millenium trilogy). I think that night, though, it was a struggle because the minxes had passed out in the car on the drive home. Absolutely nothing would wake them when we got to the campsite. We knew we were trading peace and quiet to make dinner for peace and quiet at bed-time. And they looked so angelic! To be fair, they were snoring before the sun had completely set.

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