It is the end of the human year of the island though it will keep going itself for a few more days. I headed out for a night a couple of days ago to close down the 2 cottages and collect all the laundry of the season. Ross and Luke, 2 hard core seal guys were the last men standing out there.
The first thing I noticed was the quiet. Not complete;ly silent but as good as compared to all that had gone before. Just a few days ago it must have been very different as 30 mph winds coming frrom the east combined with a high spring tide and a huge swell caused huge waves to crash onto the East side of the island. At Kirkhaven huge tree trunks had been washed in and left on the access road along with mounds of rocks. Landmarks had been moved around and a number of footballs left on a strand line. What is it about footballs that they always tuen up on the island. Must have been from the Rangers v Arbroath game when Rangers were playing seaward ?
The seals have left mud galore that the woodcock, redshank, oystercatchers and others had been taking advantage of.
The whole island seemed to be moving into a closed down state, the cliffs and rocks dark black where all the years guano had been washed off.
An Isle of May speed bump. There are still weaners lying around plucking up courage to head into the sea.
After the greyness of when I arrived there was a might blast of sunset as the sun dropped below the grey ceiling and scorched the island briefly.
On Pilgrims Haven a few seals lingered, a bull and a couple of cows. You could see their trails where they had slid out of the sea and up the beach. It was these wet trails that gave away their positions as they tried to be boulders on the beach.