Thursday was pretty wild. Half an hour after I wrote my last post the 100mph winds really hit and I have never experienced anything like it (it was a bit like being in the Wizard of Oz). It blew for about five hours and all you could do was sit and watch. Within half an hour the power lines had been blown down and it didn’t take long to realise it wasn’t really safe to leave the house.
It probably wasn’t that sensible going out to save my inflatable kayak at the height of the storm, but it was only on the way back from getting it into the shed that I was properly caught in a gust and literally swept off my feet so ran back inside. (I knew I should have been put it away at the end of summer!)
Here are some pictures of the trees that went down next to my house and also some pictures I took once the storm had died down a bit. More footage to come from Jim Manthorpe.
Lots of the buildings here have lost bits of their roofs and trees landed within inches of others, but amazingly only one person was hurt having been concussed being blown of his bicycle earlier that morning when fortunately the lifeboat was still able to make it in.
It is also something of a testimony to our power supply, an off grid hydro electric system, small sustainable communities and those who maintain the power and help clear the line that we were back up and running by 7pm yesterday. There was applause when Jim who maintains the hydro came into the pub. Mallaig and the surrounding area are still without power and won’t be back on until Monday. As a result the phones have now stopped working because the back up batteries at the local exchange only last 24hrs. So I’m guessing it will be Tuesday or Wednesday before the phones are on again for anyone trying to get hold of me. But I do have internet and skype!
Mallaig got hit worse than us and the high school children had to be escorted from the building one by one wearing hard hats because of flying debris. Most of the houses there had some damage and caravans were picked up and landed on top of cars in the Mallaig carpark.
Yesterday everyone emerged in the village slightly shell shocked to come together and talk about who had lost what and which storm was worse this one or the one six years ago when the road got washed away (this one was windier, the sea state was worse on the last one).
Suffice to say I didn’t miss a days filming!
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