Sunday morning saw us out for a stroll near Rose Ness, ostensibly looking for any birds migrating south but, in actual fact, just ensuring that there were no midges within a thousand yards. Other than the plentiful Fulmars, Redshanks and Shags, the only birds we saw that might possibly have been thinking about migration were singletons of Grey heron, Bonxie and Skylark.
However, one particular geo had a useful surprise amongst its general flotsam, a fairly intact-looking fishing box. In a moment of spontaneity, I endeavoured to recover the box, plus as much litter as I could fit into it. Our Lass stayed on top of the cliff to direct me towards any bits I might've missed, and to take photographs.
Leaving aside the driftwood, save for a small piece of gnarled trunk for Our Lass's collection, I began gathering up all manner of man-made detritus.
Ten minutes later, I struggled back to the top of the cliff with my contraband.
A ragtag jumble of plastic bottles, an aerosol can, polystyrene fragments, plastic shards, food packaging, rope, string, a banding strap, a netting bag and several... er... medical tubes.
But the beach was much cleaner.
One small bio-degradable recovery was some twists of birch bark. If only all our flotsam was so benign. Back home, we recycled what we could, re-purposed some of the rope and bagged the remainder for the trip to the Shetland incinerator.