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Sunday, 16 October 2016

Around Graemsay in October

I tried to go out and about with my camera over the recent weeks so here are a few photos.  Above Hoy Sound High lighthouse, with Orphir on the Orkney Mainland in the background.

Looking East towards Sandside and the old farm buildings.....

Though it has been sunny ALL the time - Hoy High lighthouse and Sandside on a greyer day

And a boat dropping creels (for crabs) in Sandside bay.

Further up on the island some of the ruined crofts on the hill tops (we have low hills on Graemsay!). This is the croft of Dean. The Hoy hills in the background.

Another croft on the hill.

The old and the new - to the left of the ruin are the blades of a domestic wind turbine.....

And cattle still running on the hill.  They get brought into byres once the weather gets really bad as they poach up the grazing.

Looking across Burra Sound to Hoy.....

This wee ruin is called Cott of School (as it was next to the School but wasn't connected to it and the teacher lived across the road. Mmm I know...confusing). In Spring daffodils still line the old path down to the road.

Looking across to Stromness from Fillets farm yard.

The hill above Stromness

Hoy Sound Low lighthouse looking West towards Canada!

And back down at Sandside looking West.....

And on a not-so-sunny day there was a lovely line of clouds behind the house.  They look like toy teddy bears and rabbits on a train.... Ok just me then.....

And here is Madam Button with her "Where have YOU been and why didn't you take me with you" look.....

Saturday, 15 October 2016

Autumn days

We have been so lucky in Orkney, for the first time in many years we had a proper Autumn with the sun sinking lower and the says shortening, but glorious sunshine and NO wind....... however this week I think the Orkney Autumn has returned as it's very windy today and low cloud with rain showers.  But I have the memory of the sunshine :-)

Last weekend button and I took a walk along the sandy beach.

We could hear the voices of children on the coral beach so Button was on the alert (she's not keen on children....or dogs....she just doesn't see the point of either!).

The sea and sky were a beautiful blue and it was so warm. No coat required and we're talking 8th October!

The old stone pier.

Button coming down to the shoreline to join me

And then she runs off.... looking very intently....

Ah yes, she spotted the children! Time for a paddle!

Button settles down to watch at a safe distance......

I headed for home but she was for staying and watching.....

Though I then had to "rescue" her as she hid in a hole when the rest of the children arrived with a rather bouncy dog.  Button was taking no chances.  Eventually I coaxed her off the beach, her swearing most of the way - at the dog probably...or maybe me too!

Sunday, 2 October 2016

A calm day.....

Despite some stormy days this week we've also had some lovely sunny calm ones. Not bad for Autumn in Orkney.   Above taken on a stroll on the coral beach....

And here is a short video of those gentle waves on the shore....

Saturday, 1 October 2016


I was looking out of the window last weekend and thought I saw two Selkie folk emerging from the water....  Turns out they were some folk snorkelling from a wee boat in Sandside Bay. Ah well a girl can dream :-)

And these seem to be regular seals..... they are there - honest

Look a little closer....

And closer still.... a grey seal.  As you can see above - Stromness in the background. Photos taken at the Graemsay pier.

And if you want to hear stories about selkies you can do no better than listen to Orkney's very own Tom Muir..... Click here for video and story

Thursday, 29 September 2016

Merry Dancers!

Well despite my various electronic calamities this week there have been some awesome meteorological goings on!  The Merry Dancers (aurora/Northern Lights) have been giving wonderful displays over the last couple of nights.  I haven't cracked how to take photos of them yet so will rely on others. Premysl Fojtu, a local photographer, takes some very evocative and stunning images and he is happy for me to share these.

The one above show a photon beam (bit Star Trek if you ask me!) proton arc in the sky to the West of the Northern Lights last night.  I wasn't out at the time so missed it.  Amazing though, along with the millions of stars in the sky.

And this panorama.....

Stunning images!  I love seeing the lights.  Though there is a lot of light pollution from Stromness so I have to go out the front of the house where that is blocked off so that I can really see the aurora.

Interestingly in recent years I've developed a fear of being outside in the dark. Irrational I know. I always have a good torch with me and I know where obstacles might be.  But still.... so it's a bit of a challenge for me to stand outside even for this display, but I'm determined to conquer my fear! At the moment I can last 3 minutes outside, hoping I can extend that!  Though obviously the weather has to be appropriate - ha!

Grrrrrr! Blogger stole all my links!

Seemingly Google Blogger has changed some techno stuff and now I have lost ALL the links to the blogs I like to read.  I will have to start from scratch.  Sigh..... VERY Grumpy on Graemsay.....

Not been my techno week.  My email was playing up earlier in the week (provider problem they said. Well it was MY problem too!!). Broadband was playing up just when I needed to submit some work. Then my external keyboard died. Add to that my TV digibox managed to wipe all the recordings. Gone were my "cosy sofa day" recordings such as Morse, Lewis, Wycliffe and lots of lovely interesting documentaries. And now this..... sobs quietly.....

Ah well I have the technology (pah!) I will rebuild it to misquote Billion Dollar Man.....

I'll begin with the Orkney list.......

Monday, 26 September 2016

Late summer on Graemsay

Space ship about to land on Sandside ;-) Beam me up Scotty!

Below, looking across Hoy Sound to Stromness from Graemsay.

A closer view of the harbour

Looking across to Hoy High, Sandside and the Orphir hills

The old croft of Quoynanapp

Another old croft above Western Horn

Across the green fields under a blue sky....

A field of sheep - Jacob and Zwartbles.....

Looking across the garden at Sandside to Stromness

Pecky hen strutting her stuff on the grass in front of Sandside

Look at that beady eye!  Definitely a hen on a mission for worms!

The weather is set to change this week but the last two weeks of glorious weather have set us up for Autumn that is for certain!