Tuesday, 6 May 2014

Report from the Hebrides, photos, good and bad news

Well its official - I've fallen in love with Skye.  Its a magical place - lots of mountains and sea and lovely people.  We were really lucky with the weather - we caught the odd shower and grey cloud but enjoyed quite a bit of the big yellow thing.  It was still cool up there so the suntan extends only to face, hands and forearms - a bit of coverage was needed to protect from the breeze.  The only exception was the walk out to Neist Point and lighthouse where the sheer effort needed in the climb and the fear of the sheer drop bought on a bit of a glow, so for 15 minutes the sleeveless top was on show. 
The rest of the 10 days included great views of the Outer Hebrides, the pair of golden eagles, lots of tea and cake, and the two lovely B&Bs - The Rowans on Skye at Portnalong (a very special little place, use the link to see it), and Dunborrowdale at Portree. And a big thank you to my better half for the 1,500 miles of near perfect driving. The trip was book-ended with a overnight stay in Milngavie on the way up an overnight stay at New Lanark Mill (really interesting place, use the link to have a look) and a visit to the beautiful Harlow Carr gardens in Harrogate on the way back.
Many photos were taken as you may imagine - about 550 in all.  I have to add at this point that every one was taken on the manual setting on the camera - so lots of quick, and not so quick fiddling to achieve best exposure etc.  I got news that I'd been given a distinction grade for my City and Guilds in photography - so it would have been a bit of a cheat if I'd gone back to using auto!  A couple photos appear below, hope you like them .....



The youngest offspring has had an exciting weekend helping at City Sound Project music festival in Canterbury with one day spent as artist liaison - supporting the bands before and after appearances, it also got him invited to an after show party - lucky boy! 

Talking of exciting things ............... I was lucky enough to have one of my photo chosen to appear in the Alfred East Open 14 exhibition, its on until the end of May and includes some lovely pieces of art work - worth a look.
Also .............. I've been shortlisted for the Ruth Rendell short story award with two other writers.  Its a competition run by Interact Reading which I entered last October and had nearly forgotten about it until the phone call came a few weeks ago.  I'm off to London on May 21st to a lunch where the winner will be announced, and get to meet Ruth herself.  Excited?  Over the moon!

So April has been a good month overall, but for one thing.  I lost touch with a dear nursing friend, Ian, about ten years ago only to learn from someone recently that he is very poorly with cancer, and not long for this world.  I've exchanged a couple of emails with him and he seems to be as funny and talented as he ever was.  Many of my thoughts at the moment are with him and his partner and family.


  1. Well lots of congratulations for your photo, writing and the chance to meet Ruth Rendell. Have to confess I've never read any of her books but loved Inspector Wexford on the TV, (probably showing my age now), but anyway I'm sure it will be very exciting and good luck.

  2. Hi Clare, thanks for the support. I hadn't read any of her books either just like you only watched the TV adaptations. But I've downloaded some of her short stories onto my kindle to see what her's are like before I meet her - bit of swatting. Thanks again x