... at least now workmen are out on the island trying to fix the problem. On Monday we were all getting very frustrated as there was just no news of when the Scottish Water workmen would be out again. All SW emergency numbers just gave piped music - several of us hung on for over 15 minutes at varying times with no joy. Also the SW website had removed Graemsay from the list, implying the problem was sorted - which we knew wasn't true! So each of us tried various routes....
I put a message on our local radio station's Facebook page, and as luck would have it the partner of someone connected with the water board saw the message and passed on that we had no water and no news to the "main man" on the ground. Don't know if that was what did the trick or other avenues, but on Tuesday we had workmen out and they came back again today.
It seems that water pumped over from the island of Hoy is coming ashore, so it doesn't appear to be the sub-sea pipe (thankfully!), but it's not quite clear where on the route to our water tank there are problems. Various holes have been dug, but the field that is being inspected is also crossed by a natural spring, and there are land drains there too, so it's a bit of a challenge trying to work out what's what in a boggy field! But at least we now feel progress is being made even though it may be some days before repairs are complete (oh let's be optimistic and say days not weeks!!).
However, unlike the poor folk in Northern Ireland we have been sent a large supply of (free to us) bottled water. Neighbours are being very helpful and delivering it around the island. There is still water in the taps but we are conserving this for the cattle that are indoors. Not sure how long that will last, and even those who have their own natural water supply have noticed a shortage - suggesting that their pipes may also have been affected by the extreme freezing temperatures of late.
Anyway yesterday I was over on the Mainland and while in town I nipped along to see a friend and avail myself of an offer of a hot bath! Oooh it was wonderful to luxuriate in a deep hot bath - it felt really decadent to be using all that water!!
Meanwhile yesterday most of the island were over in Stromness for a party at the Royal Hotel provided by Irene & Bobby of Breckan as it was their Ruby Wedding anniversary. Everyone had a great time, and Fran Gray from Hoy had composed a wee tune on her Ukulele which she performed for us all. It was a lovely afternoon and the singing carried on while we were sailing back to Graemsay! For some, I understand, the party went on into the wee small hours.
Irene and Bobby cutting the cake again 40 years on! (Cake made by Sandra of Graemsay - and yes it was delicious and yes I had two pieces!).