Purveyor of Bollocks to the Crowned Heads of Europe
Thursday, 25 August 2016
The last boat
They saw it coming. They asked for it to come.
A steaming boat arrived and disgorged not essential supplies or post from the mainland, but well-heeled men and women in fur coats, top hats and shiny leather shoes unsuitable for the rocks and cobbles of the mean streets between the crofts.
A camera whirred and old men and women chatted amiably at the doors of their turf-roofed hovels, the children long since gone. Some of the women gave demonstrations of yarn-spinning, on wheels which would be left behind as worthless. The yarns spun by the men in the pubs of Oban and Glasgow would be worth more in the long run.
Then they all got on board and the gulls and kittywakes followed them for a while, unaware that their nests would never more be raided for meat and eggs by men improbably suspended from ropes, secured by wooden stakes stuck into the thin skin of mean earth.
A new life for an old life, but only for those who had all but lived theirs out on St Kilda.