It was the most dreich of dreich days. In the fifty shades of rain common to Scotland, this rain curtain had droplets thicker than mist but with the same density of mist. Weather to stay in the tent for a day.
‘Hello, good morning.’ We hear someone say.
Alexander opened up the tent. Outside our tent stands a friendly old man, a teenaged boy and an energetic dog.
‘I saw your tent yesterday evening, but it was already late. I thought it was better to greet you this morning.’ the old man starts.
We get out of the tent in full rain gear and start chatting. The old man, not wearing any rain gear and also called Alexander, told us how he took over the fishing shack and boat from his elder brother. Fishing for lobster to supplement his pension. At times he will fish for Pollock and bring some of the catch to the elderly in the community up the road. The twelve-year-old boy is helping him, just to have some entertainment in the summer holiday.
‘Are you going out today, fishing for the lobsters?’ I ask.
‘Yes, there are a few pods in the bay that need emptying but the tide is going out and I’ve got to fix the boat. The engine is not running great.’ He answered.
‘I love to see how it works, can we join you on your boat, this afternoon?’ I ask expectantly. ‘Och aye, if I get the old girl fixed.’ He said, pointing to the boat.
Patiently we wait in the shack, the boat is apparently not easily fixed. Time enough to make some good pictures of Alexander’s boat. The boat lies on its side most of the afternoon, waiting for high water. Just when we expect that it will not happen and start planning dinner, the old Alexander is ready to go out.
It is great, we haul some creels like a real fisherman at work on a lobster boat. Four of the lobster and two crabs are kept aside, they are missing some legs or claws.
‘They are dinner.’ The old Alexander decides. The rest of the lobsters are stored in the holding cages close to the shack.
We return after 22.00 o’clock. Back in the shack, Alexander cooks the lobsters and the crabs. We are provided with an old rusty hammer and two lobsters each. We crack this luxurious food on the dirty wooden floor. The funny thing is that Alexander does not join in this lobsters eating feast. He prefers his dinner with white bread and baked beans. We end the evening at midnight with a wee dram of whisky.
It was a great day, meeting people, learn something new, share a meal in the most dreadful weather ever.
As a tribute to this lovely elderly chap, my younger Alexander made a watercolour of his boat.