Holidaying in the Eighties

22 November 2011
imports_CESC_0-28x9yrya-100000_02166.jpg Holidaying in the Eighties
Tommy Andrews' memories of a fishing holiday in the waters of Achiltibuie. ...
Tommy Andrews' memories of a fishing holiday in the waters of Achiltibuie.

One of my best holiday memories was the time we went to Ullapool, Wester Ross with our caravan. My pal Wullie and me had our scuba diving gear with us we went out to Achiltibuie to dive. It was the same day that Charles and Diana were getting married. Our wives were with us and they went to the hotel to see the wedding but were turned away because they weren’t residents. They happened to go to the wee shop for cigarettes and the woman there asked them if they were going to see the wedding. When they told them what had happened, she invited them to come into the back shop and see it with her and they even had tea and cookies.

Wullie and I decided to dive at the pier but there was a fish farm nearby, so we decided to make sure the owner knew that we were diving close to the farm, in case he mistook us for seals and had a shot at us. He told us it was ok but not to go near the farm for our own safety. There were scallops galore!

We were just finishing the dive when we found two dead salmon on the sea bed. We went back up to the owner’s house with the fish, not wanting to be arrested for poaching. He looked the fish over, told us that they’d escaped from the farm and probably got injured doing so and that we could have them. Then he gave us a dram each, what a nice guy. So we had two bags of scallops, two salmon and two happy wives, who’d seen the wedding. On the way back to Ullapool, we called into a restaurant and sold one of the salmon for £9. The chef asked if we had any scallops. We said we had plenty but our wives won't let us sell them - they couldn't wait to get back to the vans to cook the scallops for tea. Then the salmon was cooked the next day and we were fed like lords that week.

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