Jonathan: After weeks of dreary wind and rain, the fast-shortening days have at last settled into that pattern of weather so typical of the Hebrides: short, blustry showers, clouds of every shade of grey, tinged with pinks and gold, spells of sunshine that last half a day or fade even before they’ve begun. It’s a special joy to work outdoors in such weather: caught by a shower of rain feels more privilege than punishment – one soon dries off in the breeze. Such a pity then that so few visitors come to Uist at this time of year. Carrick has been empty for a week now, and it’ll be another fortnight before a family are here for a short break. Scottish Water have fitted a meter: from which I have realized there’s a drip-drip leak somewhere along the pipe to the house – another job to fix during the winter along with the redecorating and other maintenance work. But right now I’m busy enough with engineering work, and keeping an eye on 17 new Hebridean sheep, including our new ram.