Monday, 25 May 2009

A Toilet At The End Of The World.

Image Above: The compost toilet

A toilet at the end of the world.
Sunday 24th May

The weather could only be described as ‘bank holiday weekend’, weather. I was milking in the morning and then supposedly heading round to the other side of the island by boat to collect rubbish from a group of beach cleaners. The sea, having picked up over the course of the morning was shrouding the feet of Iona’s cliffs with breakers making a boat trip out of the question. I contemplated braving the drizzle for a walk down to the narrows before wisely deciding against it.

In the end I spent the afternoon in the compost toilet annoying two queen wasps that have begun nest building. For most visitors to the island the idea of having to use a compost toilet is enough to get used to without sharing the space with a burgeoning population of stingy things. Having personally come to consider the flush toilet as a luxury item to be marvelled at when visiting the mainland I must admit I am still not in favour presenting these creatures such an easy yet vulnerable target.

The huts are not exactly air tight and every year a queen or two starts out under the illusion that they have picked out the best location on the island for a nest. While I may share a toilet with my next door neighbour, sadly at some point I will have to withdraw the welcome to my striped friends. In the meantime I got to spend a wet afternoon photographing wildlife from the comfort of the throne.

Image right: Wasp Queen and Nest
Image below: The Other Queen and Nest.

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