Friday night was party night on the island. It was the time for the annual Harvest Home. This is a non-religious festival that celebrates the harvest. Sadly in Orkney many parishes no longer hold this event as not so many people are interested in the tradition. But Graemsay is home to a number of farms and crofts and, though there are few of us, we still celebrate the bringing in of the harvest. Though this year it's VERY late due to poor weather.
John Budge from Longhope on Hoy came along with his accordion and provided music
A lovely meal was provided by the "ladies of Graemsay" (of which I'm not one!)
Owen Tierney from Finstown was our speaker, who, during coffee and cake, spoke about community traditions and told some stories.
There were few of us fit to dance this year, but the children were inducted into the tradition.
There was the obligatory "Strip the Willow" (picture at the top of this post) and the Westray One Step (which seems to include more than one step!).Children often learn the dances at school, and though during teenage years are less keen to show their talents, they do come back to it. I'm can't hear a beat or remember any steps so I sit out.... plus... yes .... it was an outing for The Red Shoes!
And there were more stories to be told.....
Songs to be sung...
And a wee lass had a go at playing the accordion too!
A fun night was had by all. Here's to next year's harvest and hopes that the summer will be better.