Bad weather didn't stop the fun

CHRISTMAS and New Year have been a windblown and blustery affair on Herm this year.

The Polar Bear Swim was moved to Belvoir Bay due to high winds at Rosaire Steps.
The Polar Bear Swim was moved to Belvoir Bay due to high winds at Rosaire Steps.

CHRISTMAS and New Year have been a windblown and blustery affair on Herm this year.

It is rare that we have whole weeks without boats being able to run, but Christmas was one of them, with no service between Christmas Eve and the New Year weekend. On days when boats did run, there was often just one, meaning no one could nip over to Guernsey for shopping or to hit the post-Christmas sales.

Luckily, between cancelled boats and delayed flights, all our self-catering guests made it over in time for the festivities.

Because of the wind, the annual Polar Bear Swim on Christmas morning was moved from Rosaire Steps to Belvoir Bay. As well as being far more sheltered, it meant smaller children were able to take part as they could paddle in gradually rather than the usual ice-cold plunge.

Belvoir greeted us with calm water, warm sunshine and a beautiful rainbow. The swimmers seemed so refreshed by their dip that many went back in. Everyone was grateful for the hot chocolate and marshmallows, with brandy for the grown-ups, but for once the brazier wasn’t necessary.

It’s always amazing how different things can be from one side of the island to the other. Walking home past the common, we ambled into darkness, frosty air and high winds. Unfortunately, this is the weather that has held on through the week.

New Year arrived with more high winds, making for a rush on available boats by guests. It was very fitting that the Mermaid Tavern’s party theme should be pirates, with the stormy seas playing such a part in everyone’s plans as 2012 drew to a wintry end.