Wednesday, October 02, 2013


It has been a long time in the planning, but we are finally here!

We had an easy drive up to Aberdeen, staying overnight at the hotel in New Lanark. We didn't look around much - there was just time to settle in and have dinner when we arrived, and it was raining the next morning. Ah, well, another time.

First objective ticked off the next morning, by visiting a distillery very near to our route. Called Tulliebardine, it is apparently the youngest of them, and is making something of a resurgence by specialising in single malts with a 'finish'. We chose Burgundy and sherry, both lovely. Yes, they did let you taste! We are going to have to go to a specialist whisky shop in York to restock, or alternatively buy it from Amazon. The modern world, eh?

Our ferry trip was amazingly calm and uneventful. We had an unthreatening meal and a glass of wine, and I crawled in to my bunk just in case, whilst Pete went off and knitted somewhere. I even slept quite well. I am far, far less sanguine about prospects for the return trip though, unless the current gale blows itself out!

After being wet and foggy when we arrived, the weather turned positively brilliant. We have had three days of mostly sunshine during which we decided to see as much of Mainland as possible. And it is all all amazing as we had been lead to believe, quite stunning in fact. Of course, being stuffed to the gunnels with fibre on the hoof does help endear a place to you. I have seen some white fleeces that I could have leapt out of the car and snipped off with my scissors, the quality was so good.

Lots of coloured sheep, too. We did actually screech to a halt at one point when we drove past a pen full of all the colours that you could imagine. We spent so long gawping that the farmer came out, and I fully expected to be politely or otherwise asked to move along, but just the opposite! He described all the varieties there for us, told us who was related to who over several generations, explained the different numbers and types of horns depending on the breeding, and loads more stuff I sadly can't remember. So friendly and even better, he is happy to post fleece off to people who email him. A real treat!

So, sheep, Thelwell ponies that I wish I could take home in my suitcase with me they are so ridiculously cute, ravens and mergansers - nothing more exotic yet. Signs by the roadside saying, beware, otters crossing, but no otters. The DSM did spot a seal, but I didn't. Still, there is time yet. We did come across the caravanserai of the crew filming the next series of 'Shetland' but saw no action - maybe they will be including Wool Week? Who yarn bombed the Kirk? I think not........

We are going down to Sumburgh to pick up the other two tomorrow, and would like to have a look at Jarlshof. Somehow, I fear that it will be too windy for such an exposed site, but I might be wrong. There is so much to see, even without WW, I somehow don't think we shall be bored.

We have a reasonable internet connection, but it is taking the DSM ages to upload each days batch of his photos. I will wait to do mine till I get home, and make do for now with iPad ones. Which have been harder and harder to take as the wind has got stronger and stronger!

1 comment:

Sara said...

lovely pics!