Welcome to the blog of the sailing yacht Sea Bunny.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

UK visit 3 - Over the Sea to Skye

The ballard actually refers to Bonnie Prince Charlie's trip from south Uist to Skye not Skye to the mainland. Actually we went over the bridge, but it doesn't sound as good and has only been possible for a few years, certainly not in 1745!

We first attempted to get to Skye in 1969, before we were married, but chickened out when it started to snow heavily in Glengarry.  We have been promising ourselves the trip ever since and have now succeeded.

Having appreciated light, clear water & mountain ranges on our travels - Skye has them all in spades & our photos cannot do justice to the scenery.

While England was suffering torrential rain and storms, Skye was windy and cold, but reasonably dry & the air was clear. This last fact was important to us coming from a polluted Asia. Our excellent snug B&B, Glean an Ronnaich in Portree, was nicely central & we can't recommend it too highly. Walks range from gentle rambles to serious climbing in the magnificent Cuillin range. We limited ourselves to a daily gentle ramble. 

North Skye
Kilt Rock ( in the distance)
Kilt rock is a cliff formation on the NE coast where a layer volcanic rock shows half way up the cliffs, apparently resembling tartan in a kilt (English of course).

Duntulm Castle

Duntulm Castle near the northern tip of the island is the ruins of the former seat of the MacDonalds of Sleat. Not much remains & the what is left are unstable.  We have to confess that we ignored all signs & climbed up.

View from the top
The view from the top of the Trotternish Ridge is spectacular.

UK visit 2 - Edinburgh

The 3 weeks of our visit with Catharine and Steve in Edinburgh flew by. Grandsons Archie and Max are growing apace with Archie now at school and Max becoming quite articulate.  We managed a bit of babysitting and some weekend outings .It was a good break from the littleies to have lunch with Susan's sister. We also did duty visits to Susan's 102 yr old mother. 
Stuck in the mud - Roslin Glen

Female panda Tian Tian

During the visit we managed trips to both the botanical gardens and the zoological gardens, the latter just us with the boys. At 1000 hrs the only tickets available to see the giant pandas were for 1700 hrs- long time but the 7 hours with inquisative,agile boys passed quickly.
For the record we only lost Archie once!

Wooden ones are less aggressive than real ones (when awake)

UK visit 1

21/22 March saw us travelling Phuket-Kuala Lumpur-Dubai-Gatwick, with an overnight stay in Dubai. The KL to Dubai leg was supposed to be an A380, but it had been replaced with a 777 and that was only about 1/3 full - signs of the economy? So we spread ourselves & slept.

Dubai Fort
In Dubai we had a morning free so we had a healthy brisk walk to a museum in the old Dubai Fort. 

The Dubai-Gatwick leg was however nearly full. Susan was seated next to an obese man who spread himself largely into her "territory" & was very rude.  One of the few empty seats was next to Richard so she was able to move, otherwise she would have contacted the stewardess.

In UK we touched base with Nik and Lou, had the annual sort out of wardrobe and moved on to Paul & Elizabeth, catching up on Fenland news.  Richard absented himself for a night, off to Cambridge for an old boys reunion. True to promise he didn't buy the photo of white haired men!

Dubai - Air conditioned bus shelter

Boat Lagoon, Phuket

Apologies to all our readers for the lack of updates. Life has been a bit hectic.

On 9 February Sea Bunny was lifted out at Phuket Boat Lagoon principally to have the topsides painted and for a few minor jobs, expected to take about 3 weeks. However, we planned to leave her on the hard for our UK trip commencing in late March.

Not well adhered - but it is 18 years!
This was very fortunate as we found a few blisters in the paintwork below the waterline. On investigation we discovered that the epoxy coating that a previous owner had applied in 1994 could be peeled off in sheets.  This was done, copious copies of work specs written and the hull left to dry out while we went to the UK.


Playtime came when  Susan had a major birthday, so we all saved our Baht to celebrate with friends at an Indigo Pearl buffet luncheon
It was good to have John and Judy (Kalypso) and Barry & Noote (Coco de Mer) from the 2001-3 Blue Water Rally join us as well the present crowd of fun makers.