... the journal

The Guest
Refrigerator Door

These belong to my goddaughter, who lives in Kentucky

CL-BALOO.jpg (27725 bytes)

(They're big on motivational slogans)

* Discussion *

Talk about it here.


0804102988.01.LZZZZZZZ.jpg (49666 bytes)

Edward Rutherfurd



Samples of two of the
slide shows I've been making
can be downloaded from
this ZDNet page

Pictures from the Cincinnati are now up at Steve's Club Photo page.

Pictures from our Family reunion are on my own Club Photo page.

powered by SignMyGuestbook.com

That's it for today!


24 September 2001

The weeks before we left California, I had been checking the Daily Orcadian for weather. It was cold with gale force winds and rain most days. So when we packed, we packed all our warm clothing--sweatsuits, a woolen poncho, I bought a waterproof jacket. We were prepared to layer to keep warm in the heavy winds.

Seemed kind of silly today when we were driving around in a very pleasant mid-60s day with sun shining down on us! We haven't encountered any wind, nor any freezing temperature, and only very, very minimal, very brief rain. The coldest it was was on the ferry riding out to Graemsay on the first day, and it was bearable enough that I didn't even put on my jacket. Orkney in the sun is stunning. The green is greener, the sheep whiter, the water more sparkling. It becomes a magical place. I don't think I could live here (I need an occasional Big Mac!), but to let the troubles of your life and of the world fall away from you for a few days, it's ideal.

Sian is working in Kirkwall, about 18 miles from here, today and so Walt and I were on our own. We drove down to the southernmost part you can reach by car, where we had not gone before. This means crossing three causeways to travel to three different islands.

The causeways are actually military barriers, made of large mounds of concrete blocks, which Churchill ordered built to protect the inland harbor from attack by the Germans. They remain today another reminder of the fortunes of war. Off two of the barriers are the remains of sunken ships--I'm not too clear on what exactly they are, but I think they are ships that were sunk here deliberately in World War I to attempt to make a barrier at that time. I'm sure Sian will correct me if I'm wrong.

At the bottom of the ocean at Scapa Flow are parts of German vessels that were sunk here and apparently it is a popular place for diving in the summertime, to investigate the ruins. Doesn't do a thing for me.

We continued on down to South Ronaldsay and the farther we went, the sunnier it became. There were wonderful birds I'd never seen before, most of whom were quite camera shy, so they have to remain a mental photo, not a real one.

We checked out the "Tomb of Eagles," another cairn where up to 340 prehistoric people may have been buried. There was an admission charge--and it was a mile walk, round trip, at a time when time was short. We decided that by now we had seen enough prehistoric ruins to last us for this one trip, so we didn't go in, though the guidebooks say that there are some impressive scenic views from there. Judging by the height of the cliffs, I suspect the views would pale in comparison to our trip to Hoy yesterday, so I don't think that I'm sorry we decided to come back to Stromness.

We had lunch at Julia's cafe, which is across the road from our B&B. Julia's may be the only "cybercafe" in Orkney. When she was setting up her cafe, Sian told her she had to get a computer and apparently as soon as the one computer went in, tourists were lining up to use it. Today it sat in the back of the cafe, hidden from view. I would have leaped on it, were it not for the ability to use Sian's computer and not have to worry about the time flying by.

We had a nice lunch at Julia's and listened to a Scottish couple near us, reading the paper, and commenting rather scornfully on the thousands of Americans who would waste time watching something as trivial as the Miss America contest.

After lunch, Walt dropped me off here at Sian's and he has gone in to examine Stromness on foot--the parts that we didn't get to yesterday. I'm relaxing here until Sian comes home from work, then we'll go out for our last dinner together.

Maureen, who owns the B&B where we are staying, has graciously offered to put a continental breakfast in our room tonight, as we will be leaving long before the breakfast room opens up, and that will allow us the opportunity to get something to eat before we head off to Edinburgh.

It's been a unique, relaxing, and beautiful few days here in Orkney. The chance to spend some extended time with Sian has been very special. I don't know that we will ever be back this way again, but I certainly will cherish the memories we've made while here.

One Year Ago:
Laughing Sal
My City By the Bay
She bought a clothesline
It Ain't Over
Mid-Night Musings
House of Mirrors
From Tears to Tahoe

Some pictures from this journal
can be found at
Club Photo

<-- previous | Journal home | bio | cast | archive | next ->
Bev's Home Page

Created 9/5/01 by Bev Sykes