This winter has been one storm after another. Our cottage looks out to sea facing South West and wind and rain come in waves across the roofs of the cottages. Snug in the cottage with the wood burner on we’re often unaware of the storm brewing outside. Its only when we venture out that the full extent of its power is felt.
Loch Hyne normally so sheltered by Knockomagh Wood and only connected to the sea by the Rapids has been flooded in several places leaving sea weed strewn on its banks. I walk here most mornings and recently I found a baby seal washed up. It was still alive and looked at me with its enormous black eyes. A vet was called and a seal rescue centre but unfortunately it couldn’t be saved as the poor little creature had a gun shot wound in its tail. Probably due to fishermen illegally protecting their catch.
You would think that walking by a Loch would be serene but uneventful. More often than not something occurs to make my walk memorable like the day I ran to rescue a dog that a driver alerted me to. She thought the dog was drowning because of the way it was gasping out in the middle of the Loch. I ran to the jetty with my life jacket in hand. Goodness knows what I was going to do, fortunately just before I jumped I met the owner who said that her dog always swam as though it was drowning and not to worry. Other mornings in the winter when the sun shines I have been delighted by an otter it presence given away by a ring of bright water. Then up to the surface it comes and relaxes on its back preening itself in the winter sun. What always amazes me are the women that come to Loch Hyne to swim in all weathers. Some mornings I’ve stopped to chat. Me in a coat, couple of jumpers, hat and gloves and they stood there in their swimming costumes – now that’s hardy!