Having summoned the ferry to take us from Easdale village to Easdale Island by pressing the bell, we thought we’d probably be back on the next scheduled one about half an hour later. After all, it’s a small island and we had visited it previously. We had not anticipated the lure of the woolly pig or the blonde Mangalica pig, according to Wikipedia.
We found a sign saying ‘Pigs’ and followed the direction in which it pointed. We came across a sunken area with a couple of these lovely Mangalica snoozing away – this is the female.
Once we got closer, we realised that there was a large litter of tiny piglets sprawled over the male pig – we later established they were about 2 weeks old. They started to move around as we got closer.
A close-up of one of the piglets straddling dad’s foot.
Clearly, it was tea-time so they all made for the mother and started suckling. She did her best to sleep on.
After a lot of wriggling, they managed to line up so they could all get in to feed.
Happy little piglets!
Once fed, they all toddled off.
And back to dad – perhaps he has more body heat but the challenge was for the whole litter to climb on top of him and find a secure perch.
There were several false starts and not all climbing was elegant.
Some tried a double-decker approach to hold on.
Eventually, they managed to form a neat line although the one at the end didn’t look to secure and more wriggling, slipping and re-climbing followed.
Looking quite contented here.
They look much more comfortable lying snuggled up next to their dad – well, apart from the one underneath but it looked happy enough.
The sow slept on presumably happy that the boar was looking after their little family.
If you want to visit the pigs, they are owned by the folk who run the Easdale B&B which looks like a very peaceful place to stay.
Finally, a short summary of what we have on show in Edinburgh at the moment.
I enjoyed a short visit to the excellent Flowerburn B&B in Nairn. There is plenty to do here – I believe the golf is excellent and the B&B hosts are very knowledgeable about the local golf courses being past holders of the Ladies’ Cup at one of the clubs.
Not being a golfer, I prefered long walks along the beautiful beach, checking for dolphins or whales or watching dingies bobbing along the Moray coast. Unusually for me, I felt this shot needed to be in colour.
There was a bit of a breeze down at the harbour when I visited which made some interesting patterns on the sand.
I didn’t see any marine wildlife this time, but was accompanied by local 4-legged wildlife. Betty also enjoyed the beach where she ran for miles and met up with some of her canine chums.
Other local wildlife included 2 gorgeous highland cows. Again, I felt the vibrancy of this shaggy coat needed to be shown in colour in at least one shot.
Back to B&W – a few other angles.
Meanwhile, the other highland cow seemed to enjoy soaking up the rays.
Finally, while Betty was snoozing in her bed, we had night-time visits from this incredibly friendly and affectionate cat – it was difficult to get her to sit still long enough to take a photo.
When you find a great place to stay on holiday, the test of how good it is in reality is usually whether you return or not. In our case, we’ve been back to this place many times and every time find the combination of location, hosts, food, wine, accommodation, general ambience and, more recently, options for photography as excellent as in previous visits.
Located in the Vosges mountains in Lorraine region of France, on the border with Alsace, the Auberge de La Poulciere provides a perfect central base for walking, skiing (in winter, um, obviously) and visiting the local parks, lakes and mountains.
It is run by Jocelyne & Michel Bouguerne-Arnould, the former an English teacher and the latter an excellent chef. Anyone who knows us will know that good quality food and drink, ideally offset by lots of long walks, are what we like and we like this place a lot. Using the best of local ingredients including herbs picked freshly as the chef requires them, they provide a very friendly welcome and exceptional value for money. Featuring local produce, the menu includes a good selection of Alsatian wine and the local Munster cheese often makes an appearance (which Lynn particularly enjoys!).
Once again, a big thanks again to our fine hosts The Roamin’ Nose. It’s #healthkick time at the ‘Nose, so why not get along and try one of their healthy options such as a warm salad with Beetroot, roast baby parsnips, asparagus, artichokes, lentils & goats cheese? Cold? – there’s home made hot soup and it’s tasty. I know, because I test it out on your behalf on a regular basis.
Not fancying something healthy? There’s Barney’s beer, a great selection of moderately priced wines and cocktails. All god for washing down some home made pasta – my favourite when not tempted by a Roamin’ Burger, which is a proper one and gob-smackingly good too.
After eating and drinking, why not buy that nice print you have fancied, but not yet nabbed, before it disappears. It might even be one of those on offer?