US swimmers and members of “The Explorers Club” Johny, Justin and Chad called in to see us to today. They reckon they are around 65% through a quite remarkable feat – swimming round the entire coastline of Islay. I don’t think there has been a single person here who has not choked on their dram after being told of the proposition – the seas currents and tides around our beautiful island are tough enough in a boat – let alone swimming it.
Heart rates returned to something like normal when we were told that Gus Newman from Port Ellen is providing a both advice and the support boat. If Gus is involved then you can be sure that everything will be all right on the night. So to speak.
The plan is to call in at all the island’s distilleries, and in a throwback to the days of the “Pillage” rows, plunder some spirit for a cask which will then be sold to support a charity. In this case the RNLI. Our head distiller Adam Hannett was glad to oblige. He chose something really special, some 12 year old ‘triple distilled’ Bruichladdich that has been slumbering full term in a first fill Bourbon cask. Despite its age, this whisky is still at around 72% alc. vol. “Perfect for warming you up after a long day in the water.” Is how Adam put it. They tried a wee sample in an impromptu tasting from Adam – surprisingly light and fruity with notes of apricot particularly forward.
We hope to join Gus and the support crew on the boat tomorrow as these determined sportsmen try and drag their aching bodies round the last long miles of our coastline. They are all in very high spirits, despite suffering from both exhaustion and some painful sores causes by chafe from their wetsuits.
Watch this space – more news soon…