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Red telephone box - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

Westray phone box

Westray still has several relics of a bygone era; red telephone boxes. There are weeds growing inside some of them as they …

When I first visited Westray I was amazed to see that everything was tied down. The wheelie bins; tied down. A static caravan; tied down. A trampoline; tied down, with a couple of helfy concrete blocks for good measure. When the wind blows here it blows to teach everyone a lesson.
I’m told that my friend who has the relatively high-sided box van no longer needs an inspection pit to view any problems with the axles or the exhaust. It has been laid on its side; by the wind. → 6 July, 2016

45 degrees. No, that’s not the temperature in Fahrenheit. It’s the angle at which people have to walk in this wind just to keep upright in Orkney. If there’s ever a still day, there must be people falling over all over the Islands, with nothing to keep them upright. → 3 July, 2016

Weighed Down

Sharing a bench

On Papa Westray the wind knows how to blow. That means that anything that’s not tied down or cemented-in will eventually take …

On Westray I pray for a still day and then the midges appear and I give thanks for the blustery ones.

→ 14 June, 2015


My dad says “I think it’s going to be breezy in Orkney today.” I say “I think it’s going to be Orkney.” …

Destroyed by the wind

That reminds me…

…of when our trampoline blew away. The full gory story: The answer my friend

Sails of Sangar

The Sails of Sangar

Evidence of Westray’s long-established drive to harness the energy of the wind is seen in this ancient sail-less windmill at Sangar (Old …

Wind and Bottoms

It’s not possible to think about a break cycling in Orkney without discussing two subjects. The first is wind. Understanding the wind, …

The Answer My Friend

“How many years can a mountain exist, Before it’s washed to the sea?” by Bob Dylan from Blowin’ in the Wind. It takes three of …