It’s that point in the calendar when the media, including social media, reviews the year that is fast slipping away. In a few days’ time we will step into another decade and a year that is a leap year. What better time to select just one picture from each month that was 2019. It has been a difficult choice to make, and often the choices have been more on the memory they bring back rather than some photographic quality. At this point my choice differs from the photographs reproduced in the printed media. The banner photograph is from June – so June will have 2 photographs – and both feature Tiree’s famous Machair.
January’s photograph features the MV Lord of the Isles replacing the MV Clansman on the Oban-Coll-Tiree sailing. The view across the water looks cold. The backdrop is a a snow covered Ben More on the Isle of Mull. Although Tiree has many a winter storm, thankfully the most snow that we see is on neighbouring islands, near and distant.
February’s photograph was taken around 18:15 and the pier lights are on. Although daylight hours are slowly increasing, it is dark already. The photograph of cattle floats and trucks is a reminder that Tiree is a working island with a large crofting community. In the winter months soaking wet fields and mud can be a major headache.
“Have you got a favourite beach?” The answer is always the same: “No!”
Tiree has so many beaches and each one is unique.
March’s photograph is of Balephuil beach at the West End of the island and lies between Ben Hynish and Kenovara.
How the year is flying by! We are at April already. Gott Bay is famous for having Tràigh Mhòr, the Big Beach. To walk from one end to the other is about four miles. The beach is only a short distance from our home in Scarinish. The pier served by the CalMac ferries is located in Gott Bay.
It was particularly difficult to choose a photograph for May as there were so many to choose from. How the daylight hours have stretched; by now the day with the longest daylight hours is just over a month away. Here some members of Tiree’s Pipe Band are playing on Soroby Beach at the start of the Tiree popular 10K and Half-Marathon.
June’s photograph features a snapshot of Tiree’s famous Machair. Taken from close to the pier the view is across Gott Bay to the distinctive felt roof cottages at Brock, Ruaig.
A photograph of a puffin had to be included. It was photographed in JUNE when we visited the island courtesy of Tiree Sea Tours. As this is Lunga and not Tiree, surely forgiveness can be granted for an extra picture.
July is usually a busy month and it is not simply down to the sheer volume of visitors.
July includes the Tiree Fèis which was was “established in 1990 to foster and promote the language, culture and music of Tiree, making it as relevant as ever to the lifestyle of the present day in a way which draws people of all ages.”
Included in the Fèis this year was the launch of two books by Donald Meek.
The month also includes the Tiree Agricultural Show and the Tiree Music Festival. For many the highlight of this year’s festival was the appearance of Celtic Worship who led the Sunday Service in the Big Top.
Throughout the summer work progressed on repairs to the old pier adjacent to the modern linkspan. As the sun sets over Gott Bay, a launch (probably the safety) boat can be seen speeding towards the pier ramp. There is more to Tiree than sunrises and sunsets, but how we appreciate Tiree’s big skies that give an unparalleled view of those glorious sunrises and sunsets.
The highlight for some on the island in September was the Baptismal Service at Baugh. On this occasion a couple publicly acknowledged Jesus as their living Lord and Saviour. Th baptism is a picture of being united with Jesus in his death and resurrection.
November’s photograph is a reminder of the excellent health and care services on the island. On this occasion the air ambulance literally swooped overhead on its approach to the surgery to take a casualty off to one of the Mainland hospitals.
In November daylight hours are once again in short supply. Late afternoon and the sun is setting behind Ben Hynish.
Well we are almost at then of the year. Winter storms have set in for the present with Saturday’s and Sunday’s ferry sailings cancelled due to the wind and related sea conditions. The group is wet with small lochs appearing all over the place. Here in a break in the stormy weather the sunlight reflects off some boats moored on higher ground in Scarinish.
This is Life on Tiree reflecting on the year that has sped by.