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Thursday, 10 June 2010

Another Island hop

The day after. Another day of island hopping, this time I'm off to St Martins. A couple of pics of The Scillonian on the way out. The islands would grind to a halt if this boat packs up, everything comes across on this. It's unloaded at St Mary's, the cargo is sorted out, and anything for the other islands is reloaded onto a smaller ferry.

The Scillonian has been sailing back and forth for 32 years, It doesn't sail on a Sunday so you can't buy any Sunday papers untill Monday.

Here is the smaller ferry unloading it's cargo at St Martins. The island is that small people come and collect their own supplies in their pick ups and vans, when they know it has arrived. There is a haulage firm which delivers the goods on St Mary's, but I didn't see one here.

I have noticed that there is no litter strewn about, everywhere is spotlessly clean. Such a refreshing change, I bet they don't even know what a litter picking stick is, ha ha. They are very hot on recycling as well, everyone has these little wooden sheds by the side of their house, containing their wheelie bins. All the rubbish is sorted out and the bin men come along and take it away. They don't have to put the bins out on the street, they can easily be reached, just open the door at the front. Their streets look a lot tidier than ours.

St Martins is very small, less than 200 residents. There is a hotel which employs some of them, but most have to make a living whichever way they can. You see signs on the side of the road advertising places to eat and drink, tea shops, gift shops, and art galleries.

People grow things in their garden and sell them at the front of their house on a table, or a miniture market stall like this one. Just leave the money in an honesty box. Talking of honesty, no one bothers to lock their cars, or close the windows when they leave them. They even leave the keys in the ignition. Wouldn't it be nice if it was like that everywhere.

I had a good walk on St Martins, and came back to St Mary's just after lunch time. Another walk before I picked up my salad from the Co op and headed back to the hotel. A night in front of the tele. The weather isn't too good tonight.

The last day on St Mary's. My flight back was originally booked for 4.40pm but I changed it to an earlier flight. I checked out of the hotel at 10am, there is a bit of time left to walk some more. Nearly all the roads and paths are now highlighted on my OS map, there aren't many that I haven't walked. To be honest, as much as I love the place, I am beginning to get a bit claustrophobic. I wouldn't want to live here, I am a free spirit and don't like any boundaries.

It was the television programme An Island Parish which brought me here, I was hoping to meet a few familiar faces. The owner of the hotel said she would introduce me to Heike the vet, but when I asked her she said she was too busy. I thought that was a bit unfair. But I did meet Heike briefly, by chance. I was standing at a road junction making a few notes in my notebook when a car pulled up to turn round. I looked up and saw it was Heike, she has her name on the side but she is instantly recognisable. I was a litttle bit startled and said 'hello Heike'. No time to engage in a conversation, she had to rush off because she had a calf waking up from an anaesthetic and had to get back to the surgery. I saw her again the following day, she was in the bank, her car parked outside on a yellow line. Nobody bothers.

I did meet Fraser the boatman and had a little chat with him. His boat The Sea King is immaculate. He was very polite, he was just finishing work and heading off home with his daughter who works for him. Carol was busy at the airport cafe, so I didn't but in.

My last walk around the coast took me right over the top of the end of the runway. I looked out to sea to check nothing was coming in to land before I dashed across, the sign says 'No Loitering'. I can see how you might get carried away taking photographs, and not notice the airbus about to give you a close shave, ha ha.
Goodbye Scilly Isles. A little bit sad to go, but I still have some more places to visit.

You can see the Scillonian at the end of the quay.

Leaving St Mary's behind. Isn't the sea a beautiful colour.


  1. Amazing photos from the plane....what a stunning place and to think; I live so close, but I've never been there.

  2. Just beautiful aerial shots Ilona and I've loved every moment reading about your trip. Back in the 70's we went for a day trip to St. Mary's by ferry/boat. We had a marvellous day and I remember going out in the bay on a small glass- bottomed boat. Oh how I wish I had made notes about our trips from back then.

  3. lovely photo's and good post
    Josie x


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