Saturday, 23 August 2014

Our time on Isle of Scalpay

After our 1st night staying on the Isle of Harris , we decided to send a quick email off to our ex work colleague Lorna who had moved to the Isle of Scalpay over 7 years ago. It was just on the off chance that she would be available for us to make a little visit. We were so surprised when she returned with a "You must come and visit TODAY" , "I am at a craft fair in Tarbet all day today and then at the pub after, so you must come for a chat" .

So off we went................. via the seals

She also told us , to travel round the west coast of Harris before heading back into Tarbet and on to Scalpay as the west coast was full of some glorious beaches.

 The hospitality we got on Scalpay was so lovely , we ended up parked outside Lorna and Jess's house for 3 days , just taking in the views , going for wonderful walks and spending the evenings in the only pub for miles and eating and drinking with Lorna and Jess.

here's our motorhome parked outside the house and to the right is the Bothy

Lorna showed us round the lovely CartWheel Bothy (little self contained holiday flat) that they have done up and now let out on a weekly basis - more details here folks

and she even let me into her little crafty room she has upstairs where she makes cushions and other gifts from the famous Harris tweed , incorporating her own quirkiness to each item she makes.

and then , (and this is where I get really jealous) she sells her crafty things in  her very own crafty shop .......

so if you ever go to Scalpay, just passing through , or staying at CartWheel Bothy , please pop in to her shop and say hello to Lorna for me and tell her what a wonderful time I had.

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

Scotch Mist over our camp site

Killin  is a beautiful Scottish village situated at the western head of Loch Tay in Stirling (formerly Perthshire), Scotland.

The west end of the village is magnificently sited around the scenic Falls of Dochart, the main street leading down towards the Loch at the confluence of the rivers Dochart and Lochay. At the top of the main street is the camp site we stayed in on our latest trip. I couldn't resist taking this photo one morning, the scotch mist over the camp site.

Scotch mist is a  Scottish term given to a persistent drizzle with poor visibility

Thursday, 7 August 2014

Our stay at Strontian, Scotland

On our travels to the Hebridean islands we stopped at a wee village called Strontian (Srón an t-Sithein), on the shores of Loch Sunart, Argyllshire, Scotland. It is the main village in Sunart, an area in western Lochaber,Highland, Scotland, on the A861 road. It lies on the north shore of Loch Sunart, close to the head of the loch.

We were heading for the Sunart camp site , run by Tim and Lynn originally from Huddersfield , Yorkshire. Tim runs the camp site , Lynn runs her own crafty gallery shop / workshop. 

As soon as we entered the village I saw the sign that the chemical element strontium was named after the village. Me being a scientist at heart had to find out more.  I didn't see any more reference to it in the village so I did a little research on line
view from the village pub
This is what I found- 
Adair Crawford who was trained as a physician was also interested in chemical research. For a period of time, he was on the staff at St. Thomas's Hospital in London, England, and a professor of chemistry at Woolwich University.
In 1790. He was studying barium minerals and found a new (not barium) element in minerals found in the lead mines at Strontia. He called the element strontia from which the samples came. Strontia was later found to be a compound of strontium and oxygen. In 1808, Davy found a way to produce pure strontium metal. He passed an electric current through molten (melted) strontium chloride. The electric current broke the compound into its two elements:

Strontium and its compounds have relatively few commercial uses. Interestingly compounds of strontium are sometimes used to colour glass and ceramics. They give a beautiful red colour to these materials. Strontium compounds also provide the brilliant red colour of certain kinds of fireworks.

That evening , being a little fascinated by the subject , I was trying to come up with a new fair isle design. 

Don't you think it looks rather like a chemical element , electrons circling the inner neutron. I thought I might call it the "strontium" pattern.

I will be incorporating this design into my fair isle work in the next few weeks. I'll post here when I do.

Quick View of Woolly Goodies available on my web site

Quick View of Woolly Goodies available on my web site
Click on photo above to see detail / to purchase