I have been living on Skye for one year today! I thought it would be a good time to reflect on my first year.
I still look at the view every day and can’t get my head around the fact that I actually live here. I often still feel like I’m holiday. Prior to moving up here I had lived my whole life within a ten mile radius of where I was born so everything feels like a novelty being here. The best thing about moving here has been learning to kayak. I am still such a novice, and I realise it is going to take years to gain the experience I need to become a competent paddler, but bit by bit I am improving and that is as much as I can expect. The friends I have met through kayaking have been so supportive in helping me to learn and so encouraging when I have felt out of my depth in slightly more challenging conditions.
The Waternish community has been very welcoming. There are lots of people here that have moved from different parts of the UK for similar reasons to myself and there is a culture of welcoming new people. The Waternish Community Hall is well used by the locals. There are weekly clubs as well as one off entertainment evenings. The best of these was the hippie night last summer. I met a lovely couple there who have already become really good friends. Often I have gone to these evenings on my own feeling quite nervous that I might not know anyone or may not have anyone to sit with, but last Saturday I went to a Ceilidh at the hall and for the first time I felt I was surrounded by familiar and friendly faces. It really did feel like a breakthrough.
Work has picked up again after a very quiet winter. I am doing three changeovers now and that keeps me busy two or three days a week. I still have plenty of time to get on with work in the house and get out and about. The balance feels good. It wasn’t so good in the winter. I didn’t have enough money set aside to cope very well financially and just had enough for absolute necessities. That meant I didn’t have money to spend on DIY projects or even to buy my children a Christmas present. I will have to make up for that next Christmas! Still kayaking is free and that probably saved me from getting too down about money. I know to prepare better for next winter. It’s a ‘feast or famine’ economy here.
I am making progress in the house. The extension is coming along and will be finished within the next couple of months. I am putting in a lot of time and effort to finish the bathroom before my three children arrive in June. They are coming up to do the Skye Half Marathon. It will be good to have a fully functioning bathroom again and I look forward to the day I can at last post a photo of the finished bathroom! One of the things I have done since I moved up is an evening plumbing course so I’m hoping to do most of the plumbing myself.
So all in all, life is good. I have had periods of feeling unsettled and wondering why I chose to live so far away from my children but there are plenty of positives about living on Skye. The lifestyle suits me well.