Herald readers will be all too aware of the anger and frustration felt by many of Scotland’s islanders over the poor standard of the ferry services.

We recently reported that the MV Caledonian Isles, which serves on the Arran route, is set to be sidelined for nearly three months.

Read that report here 👈

Today, one of our Arran readers vents his frustration – while still maintaining a sense of humour.

Sandy MacAlister of Shiskine writes:

"Making my way towards Ardrossan last week hoping not to hear my phone ping with an email from CalMac cancelling my ferry home, as happened the last time I ventured to the mainland, it occurred to me that there was a certain familiarity about the situation folk in Arran and most of the west coast islands are currently enduring.

"In this age of PCP car loans and endlessly reliable cars, younger readers will be unfamiliar with the £200 car, which was the vehicle of necessity for most of those of my generation just about able to afford their own car 50 or so years ago.

"When going on a trip in one of those cars the first question was, will it start? If it did, the next question was, will it make it to my destination?

"If both of these hurdles were successfully negotiated the final question was, will it make it home? Arrival home without incident was considered a triumph worthy of celebration, though had we also had to contend with a booking system like that of present-day CalMac, a round trip without incident would have been a rare thing indeed.

"Congratulations to CalMac, CMAL and Transport Scotland for transporting Scotland’s islands back 50 years in time more successfully than they are currently able to transport us to and from the Scottish mainland."

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