These past few weeks I have taken in quite a few island trips in the course of Island Blue photography and marketing.
When I was sailing to Islay last week it occurred to me how in a way how so many of the Cal Mac ships take on the persona of the Island and people of that particular route they service. As I sail reasonably frequently on nearly all of the main routes and having worked closely with Chief Stewards and on board service managers for well over 20 years in supplying the ships with Island Blue publishing you do experience a layering process of memories and feelings form individual ships.
The Caledonian Isles and Isle of Mull always seem incredibly at home on their respective routes as does The Loch Seaforth which whilst relatively new in comparison she seems to have quickly become part of the Stornoway and Ullapool scene! Likewise The Hebrides seems a hand in glove fit on the Harris ~ North Uist run, perhaps because of the islands being further detached from the nearest port (and that port being Uig on Skye as well). The sight of the Hebrides entering East Loch Tarbert edging closer to Tarbert always touches an emotion!
The strange thing is that if a vessel ends up on a different route for the second part of her life, like the Hebridean Isles on the Islay run, to me she will always be the Hebridean Isles of the Outer Isles run on what you might call her birth route and memories of her proudly steaming out of Uig will always remain close to my heart!