I’m not a huge fan of small boats, birds, or for that matter the National Trust. Small boats simply scare me and make me seasick. I certainly turned down the offer of a crab sarnie prior to the voyage and took some water and oat cakes with me. I can take or leave birds and when I heard that the latter were going to sting me for £6.90, on top of the boat fare to the Inner Farne Islands, I took against them too, handing my money over with a grunt of disapproval on arriving at their island. Sorry to everyone concerned as the three hour Billy Shiel voyage last week was truly brilliant. The boat trip was far too interesting to freak me out and the commentary excellent. We saw seals and loads of seabirds and the only downside was the vile stink of rotting bird poo. The Inner Farne was like something out of Alfred Hitchcock’s movie – The Birds and they were absolutely everywhere, including all over the ground. You shouldn’t really even consider going there if you have any kind of bird phobia and certainly need some protective head gear. As for the National Trust, their young warders were helpful, pleasant and really informative and I don’t now begrudge them the landing fee due to all their hard work. I haven’t bought a small boat or joined the National Trust yet, but have since returning to York have been enjoying the birds in my own garden. Not terns, puffins, gulls, shags etc. but just starlings, sparrows, tits and the like.
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