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Knowe o' Skea

The Knowe o’ Skea

Looking out from the Knowe o’ Skea Iron age burial ground across the skerries towards Rousay in the distance.

Running away to the circus

No, not that kind of circus. I mean Circus cyaneus, the Hen Harrier. Sitting in the window seat looking over the fields …

Always buy a toilet seat that contrasts in colour and tone with woodlice in order to avoid sitting on them unexpectedly.

→ 18 August, 2010

Making Hay

Making Hay

Yesterday was a wonderful sunny day so farmers were busy cutting the grass to make hay whilst flocks of gulls followed. The …

Noup Head Panorama

Noup Head Panorama

Noup Head is my destination by bicycle today, as it was yesterday. The crushed stone path is so rough that my bicycle …



Gannets have started breeding on the Noup Head cliffs and are taking over many of the narrow ledges and expanding the number …

Dirty Washing

Washing by hand

I’m not someone who likes to air his dirty laundry in public. That’s why I bring you only my cleanest pants and …


The smell of fresh bread

“Would you like some eggs?” our Westray neighbour asks. She’s very kind. She’s a real life faerie princess (“The UK’s leading exponent …


They call it flagstone…

… because it’s stone and breaks naturally into flags. The whole Island of Westray is made of it. Perfect flagstone paving everytime. …

Slugs and Fine China

Slugs and Fine China

When you move to an abandoned house there are always inhabitants who need to be evicted. Some are simply guests. Some are …

Dirt on

With the dirt on…

Fresh veg. With the dirt on. Straight out of the garden and onto the rack at Pierowall Fish. I’ll have some of …

Fungus Fairy Rings

Fungus Fairy Rings

In the disabled parking area of the 124th Orkney County Show at Bignold Park I spot a fairy ring. I’m always distracted …

Orkney Chair

Form Follows Function

The making of traditional furniture has nearly died out in mainland Britain. There are few master craftsmen, little knowledge of natural materials …


Sign on the Westray Ferry

I love workplace signs. There’s something about working in close quarters with people that can really wind you up. The office kitchen …

Always shake the woodlice off your flannel before using it to wipe your face in the morning.

→ 15 August, 2010


Decks may be slippery…

Today was a full day on the Mainland of Orkney for the Orkney County Show. A trip on the ferry is always …

Line Up

Line Up

Ponies and riders line up for the judging at the Orkney County Show.



Judging at the Orkney County Show.


The Westray Foot

Evie’s sculpture of The Westray Foot from pebbles collected at The Bay of Swartmill.

Hume Sweet Hume

Hume Sweet Hume

I’m a man and I love knitting. There, I feel better for unburdening myself already. Craftwork. Fine and designer knitting. Italian yarns. …

The Twa Corbies

I loved chemistry at school, despite how difficult I found it to remember. Part of that was, of course, the teacher I …


Incomers on Westray

It’s easy to tell an incomer on Westray. They stick out like a sore thumb. I’m one of them, I should know. …


Grooves and Scratches

There are so many patterns on rocks here it’s dizzying. There are magnificent beds of wave patterns from fossilised freshwater beaches 380 …