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Tuesday 26 February 2019

February skies

These pictures were taken about 10 days ago.  Above Sunrise.  Which today was at 07.19.  And below, a sunset (love the rays!) which was at 17.34 today.  Yay! The days are getting longer!

And lovely blue skies.... there is just a trace of snow on the top of Ward Hill (gone today).

Clouds over Orkney Mainland (and Graemsay too of course!)

Sunshine catching the tower of the lighthouse

Calm seas too

Raindrops on a window pane...

Monday 25 February 2019

Sunday wander with the girls...

OK I know you are reading this on Monday, but really, I took these photos Sunday.... It was a lovely calm day and the tide was in.  Sat in the garden with the hens, before wandering to the shore with Button.

The old stone pier disappearing under the tide...

Button with a rather manic look as she'd just had a roll in the shell sand - she's covered in it.  One of her favourite activities!

Last summer's sea pinks dried in the salt and the wind but still hanging on!

Here comes the Hamnavoe ferry...

Heading into Stromness

No I'm not morphing into the beach.... I'm paddling! Honest!

See.... or rather...sea....

Heading back now..... a window into the past....

The old Hay Loft - what's left of the loft....

In the garden the pulmonaria (lung wort) is in flower.

And the girls are enjoying being in the garden, nibbling the grass and scratching about in the earth.

This old girl is over 8 years old!  Long past laying eggs now but she still enjoys pottering around with the flock.  She's a Light Sussex hen.

Go girls - saves me mowing the grass.....maybe....

I love the markings on this hen.  She is a cross between a Light Sussex and a brown (breed unknown) cockerel.

This hen's feathers look as if they are lace

You've heard of getting your ducks in a row... well I'm trying it with hens...

Sunday 24 February 2019

The old croft and buildings of Breckan, Graemsay

I took a wander up to "Breckan" today as JB from the USA was keen to see some photos as his family were from the croft many many years ago.  So here are some of the photos.  The old croft is in ruins now and the land part of the larger farm of Fillets. But I love the old stone buildings and wonder what the stone walls would say if they could talk!

That's the Orkney Mainland in the background.

This building doesn't seem to have a chimney so may well have been a byre.  Latterly the cement and iron fittings were added to tie the kye (cattle) to in Winter.

The other end of the building - still no sign of a chimney....

The land looks down to Hoy Low lighthouse and over the Hoy Sound to Black Craig on the West Mainland of Orkney.

Stepped buildings...

Looking over to Stromness from Breckan

Not sure if the old machinery was originally from Breckan or Fillets.  But the same sort of machinery would have farmed the Breckan land in days past.

The flagstone leaning up against the wall was originally part of the roof. In the hazy background is the croft of Windywalls.

More flagstones from the roof.  You'd want to hope that the couples (wooden frame) was strong enough to hold these up over your head!

Looking through a window at Breckan to Quoynanapp, and the hydro (electric) pole.

More slates off the roof

Inside one of the longer buildings.  Flags from the roof again.  Flags on the floor (original).  And you can see the modifications that have been made to the wall over the years.

Looking down the length of the building, with a flagstone floor.

Interesting construction here.  Maybe blocking up a door?

This is likely to have been a "sink bain" which were recesses in walls to keep things.  This looks a bit like the dresser at Skara Brae!  However there are holes in this now - perhaps because the back would have only been a stone width deep and has deteriorated over the years.

Newer buildings surround the old ones now

More flags from the roof.  And you can see the newer house of Breckan between the buildings.

The roofline of the old building.

From Breckan looking towards the Hoy Hills.

Hope you enjoyed your wander round Breckan.  Sorry the weather was rather grey and chilly!

Friday 22 February 2019

Earlier in February

Yes I know it is nearly the end of the month but haven't had the time to post anything. Ooops.  Anyway these pictures were taken in the first week of February when there was still the remains of snow on the Hoy hills - mostly gone now apart from some clinging to the ridge.  So this is the usual walk to the coral beach, with Button of course.  It was a lovely mild, calm day, positively Spring like even in early February.

The clouds were magnificent that day.  Like a duvet over the Hoy hills!

The sun glistening off the sand at the appropriately named "Sandside bay"

The sea was so calm with the waves gently lapping the shore.....

I love the way the sea sculpts the coral sand.

Wave to Stromness! Oooh we could almost walk there....

The old burned out boat on the shore, below the Sail house.  You can see the square reflection of the sun shining through the sail house window on the old dyke (wall).

The remains of the old forge, the gable end wall now on the shore.  This wall looks quite precarious! Every winter I expect to see it collapsed on the shore below.  The old reaper/binder teetering on the brink!

See....REALLY teetering on the edge!

Fancy a swim?

Heading home....

Meanwhile in the garden, the hebe managed to stay green all winter as there were no marauding sheep this season!  And it flowered too.  The rest of the garden is dormant but ready to Spring into life (see what I did there?)

And Button loves the first signs of Spring too.  She looks a bit manic here but she loves rolling on this particular piece of stone. Mad cat......