THE ORKNEY WEDDING - more in photo section.

final page of Silver Sea UK 2018

 It is WEDNESDAY and the sorrowful end of a sterling adventure   WE’RE HOME:  and it’s time to WRAP it UP

FROM LONDON TO LONDON in one fell swoop

 And we’re off with a bang.

Now that I’ve become  more fam;iliar with my material  I feel compelled to assign a more fitting and descriptive introduction:



The area we were visiting  was mostly,  at least in form if not fact, unfamiliar territory.

As I alluded to when I coined the opening phrase: I was very much impressed by the visually  STUPENDOUS ENVIRONMENT – and the appearance of almost unimpeded NATURE.  lots of sky, lots of open (but disconcertingly treeless) fields, endless sea,  and lots of rocks.  This was a land of gorse, heather and peat marshes.  

Beyond that were those wonderful but rare qualities I encountered:   peace and quiet.  There were a lot of negative sounding positives like: there was no traffic, no stress, no pressure,  there were  no crowds, no tourists, little population,  We were definitely off the beaten track – I bet that won’t last for very much longer. I get the impression we may have been fortunate enough indeed to have beaten the crowds, hallelujah and a blessing.  There were no big destinations, no big expectations, no extravagant itinerary.  All  that does certainly add up to a relaxing stress free venture doesn’t it?  Heaven you say;  absolutely.  Add a couple of those whiskey tastings offered and – you can take it from there.

To my utmost delight,  it proved to be the ultimate GEOLOGY lesson.   EVERY form of geological formation is laid out for you in all it’s splendiferous  profusion.   I come from Virginia; the geology is enormously different and primarily invisible under the dense forest cover (I am not complaining – those trees are of the utmost importance, but they make me even more appreciative when I encounter this kind of terrain). I am a dedicated rock hound so this meant a great deal to me.


There may not have been many people, houses or trees, but there were lots of sheep, as well as  a profusion of WIND MILLS.  The use and development of sustainable and RENEWABLE ENERGY is surely one of their most impressive and beneficial contributions.   It is ironic that they sit right on top of the huge North Sea oil field but  I gather is actually petering out.

Amongst all these positive negatives I must not neglect the gaps in history which I have gratefully filled Not to be forgotten  was the wealth of history that we were privileged to encounter. 

I love history surely as much as I love rocks so I’d  be severely remiss if I were to  neglect mentioning how pleased I am to have filled a lot of the gaps in my knowledge of this part of the world.

But when all is said and done I really do  PREFER NATURAL TO STRUCTURAL DESTINATIONS  any day+++++without a doubt. I couldn’t have been happier.

What could be more incredible than being on a ship docked virtually at THE TOWER OF LONDON .

A major issue on this trip was how the  Silver Sea Cruise Line would stack up to our all- time favorite Seabourn.  The initial impression was excellent:   Of course it was a beautiful sleek luxurious shipThe big feature   had to be their choice of dockage;  for this they won many, many stars and plus points right off the bat.  It was overwhelmingly successful as expected.There was the fun little wrinkle  involving the lack of water in the pool but they survived this minor setback with ease.  

Other details deserving a bit of a mention:

The menu:  Even though this is an Italian ship the menu proved to be true – maybe not English as I thought, , but – continental.  In other words pretty much par for the course.    The best surprise resulting from this English connection was the appearance of Sticky Toffee Pudding – a VERY ENGLISH dessert indeed and one  I was very much aware  of. . I discovered it on the Food channel – “THE best thing I ever ate” and we attempted to get some for my birthday in April but unfortunately we were   unable to persuade  the restaurant in Denver whose dessert it was, that they really should ship us some,   so I didn’t get my wish.  And now  here it was. It wasn’t served with the requisite  Bourbon ice cream  but I’ll  bet they would have done some – I’m sure they had bourbon- didn’t think to ask and it was lunch and too early for booze anyway)., It  appeared  at least twice much to my delight.  (I have been informed it’s easy to make but good luck on that).  The best food was not the evening eight (maybe) course extravaganza(here’s where the rather  insipid Continental came in) but rather what was on the buffet for lunch - for instance a huge and I’d say local salmon and other delicious looking entrees but I just can’t do  dinner at noon.

The SIDE TOURS generally started at a reasonable hour and were of an equally reasonable length.  (actually for most of the time they’d have had a difficult time keeping us entertained for anything longer on this trip.   I don’t care about reasons, I was just relieved at the fact,  and always included a break with clean restrooms and included tea and scones or digestive biscuits. I like them this way :   it gave one the opportunity to return to the ship for lunch and a return to the location for further exploration later. This was a blessedly Low key approach to touring.

And for a bit of the whimsical:  dress code.  I was a bit leery –about  the suggested dress code(that face just showed up there – the computer is now having personal editorial  opinions- Busy body!)   Silver Sea in its cruise manual recommends for formal attire an evening gown- evening gown - or cocktail dress: No way.  That’s darned near antiquarian.   I have no idea where they were coming from with that and could even possibly be a deal breaker.  Many years ago I spent a great deal of thought on what might be meant by   “casual chic”,  suggested  as informal dinner attire.  I finally got a handle on that – Chico”s  (not to be advertising) works quite adequately  for all occasions  – actually even formal.  I am quite relieved to be rid of that concern.  Actually, the dress code has had a steep revision- leniency is the rule.  The Cruise ships really have no intention of being an imposition – they want and need to have happy passengers after all.

Bottom line:  The SilverSea Cruise Line passed with flying colors.  Now we need to do a bit of cost comparison being sure to remember to factor in “the small ship advantage”.  ***13

An accomplishment, we’ve finally been to the rest of the UK.  There  is presumably  a time and a place for everything and in this case it is absolutely true. The problems  I mentioned at the beginning are no longer an issue;  we have finally acquired the perfect method of checking out the surroundings with speed and complete ease,  and the opportunity was presented to us on a platter.   

And an added benefit which came as a default :  I was surrounded by all forms of enchanting dialects and  equally delightful versions of the English language  ALL THE TIME. 

And how did my plants and gardens  fare after all the fussing?   In the end there was  minimal damage, although the  summer annuals display did suffer – it appears you really do have to keep up with their needs.  That’s maybe rather  unfortunate  after all the time and effort expended in purchasing and planting; I should try not to do that again.  It rained the entire week before we left so landscaping was just fine. There’s an easy solution here; don’t plant.  Sure would save a lot of work too.  Well, maybe.

I was so disturbed about missing my favorite??? time of the year. The weather wasn’t anywhere near as unseasonal as I expected it to be; a bit autumnal but quite pleasant and I actually had quite a satisfactory amount of  summer after all. 

The photos as usual  are perfectly awful – actually I think they’re the worse yet. Obviously  I’m never going to get decent pictures as long as I insist on sitting around in a bus.  But so what,  If it’s formidable photos that are your goal,  this cruise type trip will never work – lousy conditions.  The only way to succeed is to sit for days, months or even more in one area to be prepared  for reasonable photo ops.   Anything else is sheer potluck.  I feel happy if I come away with one or two good shots; mostly they are  just for future memory anyway. 

I came back with a formidablestring of questions needing research.  This is the most lasting  gift I can be left with from any trip, and the list is continuing to grow.  Not only is this a wonderful learning experience in itself,  there is the added opportunity to interact  with the  computer - goody – well, it is undeniably a learning experience of sorts, but I’m not so sure  how  useful or desirable (unless I keep writing) that actually is- sure can waste/eat up, a lot of time. 

I’ve spent more time writing about this trip than I spent experiencing it – and isn’t that a wonderful thing?


MY notes are important to me:  Any change of method or routine is worth mentioning.. My note-taking technique underwent/experienced a slight sea change on this cruise thanks to a bit of forgetfulness.   I was on my way ashore one morning when I discovered I had forgotten my notepad.   I appealed to the  breakfast Maitre d’ for a piece of paper and he contributed what he had – post- it notes; they  worked very well – much better than the notepad I normally use.  Last trip I managed to forget   what direction I was going - which left me  a huge messy quandary when I attempted  to transcribe them.  I shall have to find a new supply of those post-it notes – they’re not the normal size….and I hope I don’t have to buy a box worth. 

 My normal routine was to spend the cocktail “hour” every evening adding to and editing  the NOTES from the days tour;  but this trip was different.   I never did that on this trip.  I THINK THIS IS NOTEWORTHY In itself.  I suspect that was due to the fact that being a small ship the bar environment was  quite intimate. more intimate space.   We actually often got into conversations with others –– and I’d say that was quite  commendable.  I’m not much of an extrovert – I think it’s good to change that occasionally.  there was a lot of hobnobbing going on AND THE MARTINIS WERE VERY GOOD.  WHATEVER IT TAKES, I SAY.  Much more fun than sitting there with my nose in my writing. And lots less conspicuous.

A SAD FAREWELL to a thoroughly delightful excursion.    

Believe it or not I think this was the most totally enjoyable and satisfying  trip we’ve ever been on (this is not to include our many past or projected land  trips  in England) –it was without a doubt more comfortable and with more ease than we can achieve on our own,   and I hasten to add this was without the benefit of any whiskey tastings.

What’s better than being able to say that  I DID A LOT OF “LIVE FOR THE MOMENT” TIME; very much ideal and not ever easily achieved. 


=====================  ------------    ================   ================ =   ============

PS: Caught another exhilarating happy - totally by accident. Soon after our return, our ship, the “Silver Wind”,  was featured on AWE cable TV.   Monday nights at dinner this is our default channel usually showing  a cruise program;  sometimes we even watch it if the destinations are good or perhaps unknown mostly as an attempt to  keep abreast of the cruise world.  I was switching  to another channel when we caught “… ,,. Silver” and sure enough,  there it was.  I was so excited.  I suppose that’s the closest I’ll ever be to being famous.


====                ================                  ===========                ================                  ========================                   ===================


  *1 items with one star *1 are  Items I mention   that I would like to clarify.    

 * 1 -  The board game I mentioned:  “The Great Game of Britain:  a fascinating train journey through historic Britain” by perhaps Condor,  many years ago.

*2 -  Insignificant as this  may , I really look forward to cruise breakfasts, yummy yumm – I’ve listed it and Martinis as prime purposes for why I travel, that’s how serious I am.  And I’m not talking about the huge amount of just about anything particularly  decadent  that a buffet cruise breakfast is expected to offer.  What I really love are their scrambled eggs.  I sure can’t scramble eggs this good myself.  I have a suspicion it is a quantity thing;  cooked in kitchens catering to a large number of people so they are being prepared in commercial sized batches, just like I had way back in my college kitchen.  –Amazingly enough the recipe must be shared by all cruise lines because the very same version has shown up every time.  My other enjoyment consists of really primitive, rough appearing  cold cereal – just a small amount – ( crispy the rougher and uglier the better – I have had to make do unfortunately with such plebian offerings as All Bran – fairly gnarly but not as much as I’d like, or Special K shudder)  with fruit yoghurt on top …yummm.

  You may wonder about my apparent obsession over food and you may not even approve because it is so glutton-like,   BUT - my normal, daily  menu is as close to the wire as I can keep it and still not feel deprived.  I am serious about weight,   at least control, so I save up for trips and I it’s then it’s no holds barred.  I am usually back to my normal weight quite quickly.  Admittedly, losing weight with this protocol is so slow its almost barely perceptible – but it is there and that’s all I ask. 

*3 -   Martinis –I really, really love Martinis.  What I have said about the food is true of the Martinis as well,  but this restriction is more due to my belief that “ more is less”,  as well as “too much of a good thing”.  Actually, the same could be said of food but that is something I definitely do not think.   I restrict intake of my very favorite quaff to once a month, when we indulge in a restaurant dinner.    

*4 -  ADD-ONS  -    this is my term for  days added to a cruise in order to take advantage of cities of departure or arrival. This is at the traveler’s discretion and cost, usually.

This particular trip involves add-ons as part of the price of the cruise, and is a healthy addition of days in London as well as extra time in Edinburgh.  Edinburgh could never feasibly be a normal add-on, and I can imagine that the extra time was a necessity in order  to allow for the evening  tour to the Tattoo.

Could this possibly be the latest thing; a futuristic form of an upgrade? Our objection, if you can call it that, is that if you’ve paid the ship you probably are not too interested in taking full advantage of this arrangement; 5-star restaurant or a night at a special hotel maybe.

That leaves the question of London and a total of three days.  The process of passenger turnover usually takes one day with departure from port taking place that evening.  I suspect the schedule for this particular cruise was amended  in order to accommodate  the passage through the Tower Bridge.  This does not explain the added day at the end of the cruise.  I’m not complaining, just curious.

As far as the desirability of an add-on in London is concerned;   I can’t imagine that every one of these people is not quite  familiar with London  and may perhaps actually desire extra time elsewhere.

I discovered a rather whimsical twist to this arrangement on this cruise.  There was a group of passengers on board who actually live there -  in London.  So why would they be interested in those extra days?  As I explained earlier;  they  expected to use the  ship as a convenient hotel with all that might entail including the poolside MaiTais.  An additional and very clever wrinkle: they reminded me that it was an ideal way to travel – didn’t have to get near an airport.     Now that is magnificent thinking indeed and how very British!

*5 - SMALL SHIP ADVANTAGE:  I think there are many,  starting with the fact that they are  much kinder to people with mobility issues.  This becomes incrementally less so as the ship becomes  larger.

Beyond that,   there’s the obvious reduction in crowds; a major cause of waste of time and loss of efficiency.   Everything is easier smaller;  less stressful, dining room seating, etc.    They are more likely to dock pier side rather than anchor and spend time dealing with tenders.  And who actually  thinks about security while on a pleasure cruise?  But it’s a definite issue and appears on the news all the time.  The larger the ship the more likely there is to be some kind of trouble.  Basically so many people equals more invisibility: Smaller ships much more awareness.  And illness? Can spread rapidly as there are more victims to affect. 

While we’re on the subject I’ll let you in on a little secret.  When a cruise line decides it needs a larger ship it simply takes one of its small ones, cuts it in half, and fills the gap with extra ship.  I only just discovered this …strikes me as cheating and maybe even a little sacrilegious somehow.    Silver Sea has reportedly done this.

 There is a thought that the smaller ships have a distinct advantage as they are able to visit smaller harbors. Having said this I am going  to have to eat my words: the newest most mammoth 5575 passenger ship has just visited Orkney. 

About the  issue of the HUGENESS of the new ships:  they look like floating apartment buildings – I wonder if they function like one too. What is the likelihood  they will continue to get larger  -   where and will this all end?  I’ve put some notes in my Cruise file – I should make it a point to look into this. 

*6 - Why I travel..   what actually motivates me?  What would be a good answer when I’m asked again?

I’ve pretty much visited all the places I wanted to go:  there are some serious exceptions but I’m afraid they are out of the question.  That category pretty much covers those destinations listed as being one of the 100 places you must visit before you die.      Beyond that? 

traveling is my life. Well, not  quite, but there is no doubt that I  really do enjoy it:  it contributes greatly to my general sense of wellbeing.  

My travel journal– gives me a writing project; and opens up new avenues to explore. I get the material for all this writing that keeps me so happily, or unhappily as the case may be, occupied.

Enrichment, adventure, challenge, entertainment, a bit of an escape.  I learn so much and get so much out of it.  Food for thought..  a stroll through the park of my life, a lot of perfectly awful photos, and lots of material to torture my computer with – and likewise to acquire super learning ops  (this whole computer writing business uses up a great deal of time, effort, patience, imagination, etc etc.  without the travel material to write about – well – I probably wouldn’t use the computer for very much of anything.  Boy, that thought has got a lot of possibilities.

I guess in a way I also say that it supplies me with FOOD FOR THOUGHT    translating that to mean  sustenance as being a purpose in life.  I suppose so.  May not be literally, perhaps not, but I sure do gain a lot of weight.  

It certainly gives me something to look forward to and it’s sure as heck a lot better than sitting at home waiting to die o- that sounds cynical.    

Could I state the whole business in a more palatable way???    It occurred to me as I was taking my shower – where I do most of my thinking –I’m using the money I made from my paid hobby – which was working at the library – to pay for my retirement hobby – traveling.  This is SO fitting. Appropriate, and suitable  

  Oh, and I forgot the obvious:  the martinis, the scrambled eggs and the yoghurt cereal.    


– there’s a lot more to this section than just a list.   These are the 3 star *** specials ***; those items that definitely needed more time and effort for future exploration. And actually as stated above, my sustenance, my food for thought.

three stars and a number: ***1 are  questions I have had that either need further investigation or I had more to say about


I CHEATED – JUST A BIT.  I SIMPLY couldn’t resist just a quick peek.   I’ll fill in the gaps later.

1***who can dock at THE TOWER BRIDGE? 

OMG – I really thought I’d caught Google this time (an ongoing challenge) but low and behold, it came up with a real doozy right off the bat;  a web page dedicated to luxury cruise lines.  The word seems to be that docking at the HMSBelfast (the battleship that serves as the pier),  is very exclusive, limited to small and very luxurious cruise ships like WATCH THIS Seabourn as well as Silver Sea.  I am so pleased. Although I am actually somewhat in denial over the luxury bit. ( I figured it was true of Silver Sea and I was willing to accept the fact that Seabourn was certainly exceptional…)  Eventually I discovered that both the Spirit and the Pride partook of the opportunity, but I probably wouldn’t have done it anyway.  At that point I had other fish to fry.

(cont.).  Seabourn may no longer qualify – I think their ships got too big (HAH!- I can only hope they rectify that. They seem to be docking in Dover.  Further information - like who’s docked there now – seemed to be unattainable - I have to do more searching.  

2***    FOOT TUNNEL as well as BRIDGES  … There is a foot tunnel beneath the Thames at Greenwich. The one  comment I read described  it as being dirty and scary. I do not contest that opinion one bit.  That is only one person’s though. 

And were there really no, NO bridges  across the Thames below Tower Bridge?  What I thought could perhaps be a bridge turned out, with the help of Google maps, to be tunnels a bit below Greenwich.  This does seem very strange to me.  When we went from Kent north to visit East Anglia we did not go back in to London- we went across the Thames somehow..  I’m sorry to blow a perfectly fine story BUT down river at Dartford is the Queen Elizabeth Bridge BRIDGE  connecting  Kent and Norfolk.  I didn’t really need this information but I just had to find the truth. 

3*** the CABLECAR

EMIRATES AIR LINE CABLE CAR – and was I startled when I encountered this.  What the heck were the Emirates doing there?  Anyway - The advertising blurb announces that it is an “  easy way to get between Greenwich and Royal Docks with magnificent views over East London”.   A bit  further on I encountered the headline asserting that it is  “ London’s  million pound White Elephant. This “State of the art commuter link” has failed to live up to expectations.  It was masterminded by Mayor Boris Johnson and sponsored by the Emirates Air Line. I can’t imagine WHY?  ...Boris blames lack of success on strong winds  Baloney.  It has developed in to a tourist attraction rather than commuter service,  however, ”The number of commuters using it has been estimated at 16 … and …” it would be cheaper to buy them a gold-plated mini-bus” This is from THE GUARDIAN – AND IT’S A HOOT.  they offered me a subscription and I may take them up on that if all their articles are so humorous.  I didn’t quit there.  I took a livewebcam  trip on the cable car  - real neat. Just look at what wonderful fun and great possibilities I’m getting from all of this. And I haven’t finished with this subject I don’t think.

4*** ST. PATRICK was a 5th century Romano-British or, in a more comprehensible form, born in England of Roman heritage,  a Christian Missionary,  and Bishop in Ireland. The article  asserts that he was never Catholic, but Henry V in his blanket effort to get rid of all evidence of Catholicism, declare him to be officially Episcopalian.    That didn’t prevent him from being made  the Patron Saint of this very Catholic country.  That does seem odd to me, but apparently he’s Patron Saint of other countries I think regardless of religion.  I guess he was just popular. 

5***MOLLY MALONE and Trump: Well , this just had to be  “fake news”:  It wasn’t wasn’t however very far off the mark.  Donald Trump’s mother was Mary Anne MacLeod who was born in the Outer Hebrides of Scotland – I actually think that’s where I heard this gossip. (  A timely political jest?)  She married  an American real estate developer named Fred Trump -    and I’ve had enough of that.   Bzzz – check out the picture of her in WIKIPEDIA  – spitting image…horrors.

6***GIANT’S CAUSEWAY…. How does impression stack up to reality….i have just discovered Virginia has an identical rock formation and it may even be more expansive. 

7***James V1 and I, and other BITS  and pieces of SCOTTISH HISTORY…  there is a lot of rather critical Scottish history which I have rather cavalierly been ignoring for eons.  I think it’s high time I came to terms with this dearth of knowledge so these are a few of the bits and pieces of Scottish history I’ve so far ignored.

It’s  about time I got a handle on “Bonnie Prince Charley” and the Battle of Culloden;  so familiar but so vague.  . 

  Bonnie Prince Charley – known through history a “The Pretender” (who first came to my attention as I learned to play guitar in the ‘60s), and The Battle of Culloden (I thought I had managed  to evade this one this trip but I guess not.  Seems the two are related.  Imagine that).  King James died as well as all other perceived English heirs to the throne (leaving the way for the ascendance  of the  Hanoverian Georges).  Charley assumed he had a perfect right to that throne according to the prevailing sympathy of the day  “the Divine Right of Kings” so with the possibility of  power implicit he was enabled to collect a sizeable group of  supporters and went to battle 1746 /Culloden. Losing this battle being  the final nail on the Stuart/Jacobite pretensions to the English throne..//1746.  There still exists a rather strong sentiment in his favor as most of the people of Scotland were very much against being part of England.  

 I am very pleased, I’ve finally managed to get that story straightened out.   learned something I had absolutely no incentive to learn….learning anything – actually one thing I go on cruises for.

8*** HOW PREVALENT IS DEFORESTATION throughout  the world?  I’ve seen a lot of it in England and Greece and probably elsewhere is was not conscious of.  Much of it I was told was caused by the stripping of forests for use in ship or house building; there may be  various reasons as well.    I have thought a lot of it was due to  the environment or climate when in fact it may have been deliberate.  There is a great deal of it being done currently – a great detriment to the health of our Planet.     

9***KILTS:   what actually is with the Kilts?  Aren’t they kind of drafty for this far North?  We’re not talking  Greece or Rome after all…

10***That small DISPLAY ON PLATE TECTONICS on the mountainside of Ullapool – no way could I get much out of that peek– no time, and there was a kid playing with all the moving displays.  I’d be delighted if I could I possibly find out what was there?

11***  the PICTS and their presence in Orkney.  Where did they come from and what possessed them to migrate so far north so long ago?  All I’ve learned so far is that they were the predecessors of the Gaels.

12***RESEARCH ORKNEY…… How terrible is it to live there?

  70 islands  A PAIR of archipelagos NE Coast of Scotland along with Shetland.  Population 20,100  density 52 per square mile.  NORTHERN and temperate.  41o in Feb, 59o in August.  If it snows it remains only one day. Nov/Feb. Share common pictish and Norse history.  Played significant role NAVAL both world wars of 20th c.

Scandinavian influence remains strong, both have strong distinct local cultures. 

Orkney possesses very aggressive tourist PR outfit -   I have a feeling it’s the whole population.  I came home with an impressively  GLOSSY MAGAZINE apparently a tourist handout.  It is very complete in its information even listing what to do’s.  I got a rather distinct impressions that there is at least a tiny effort to invent  strictly local traditions/festivals for use  in publicity and to stress their uniqueness.   Seems to include some thought involving processions, maybe parades COMPLETE WITH FLOATS – isn’t this an awful lot to expect of such a thiny populated area?  (poor people, like belonging to a sorority and having to decorate that damned float for Homecoming) whether you like to or not). there was interesting  ads pushing  local industries – obviously (I would think have to be directed to the tourists like jewelry and furniture)  -. What about wedding venue? I’m not certain yet –    Didn’t look like cathedral.   RUM…why?  Maybe even how?  As yet no Ferris wheel shopping mall or cable car(these things are sure popping up in the strangest places.  Anyway, probably won’t be long.  Attracting 5575 passenger ship,  please,  with hopes of more.  Can we not think of a more less invasive  ……… moneymaking pursuit ?  maybe they really do like these crowds..  considering the length of their winters maybe this effort can be considered stocking up/fueling up for winter hibernation like bears and squirrels.

Competitive sports – I gather that is a big asset in improving the life style.  SPORT&LEISUREORKNEY.COM a web site certainly would give the impression of an active, positive feeling population. How true?  There are all kinds of website connections and blogs to explore – you could acquire a pen pal I’ll bet. Major concerts/arts and leisure activities.  Live theatre performances via satellite link in a theater housing 243 people and 2D/3D blockinsters cinema (sounded futuristic to me).  Fitness classes/gyms and swimming pools.  Sounds like an extremely active crowd – sure changes my concept if its true.

BEREMEAL is apparently an ancient form of barley with a burgeoning reputation – an increasingly important ingredient. – there’s that ancient grain our guide mentioned.   An active effort being made to develop food and drink products solely available on Orkney. 

ORKNEY.COM newsletter and blog.  Creative community involves pottery.  Blog life on a small island- life on Graemsay (population 23) life is quiet here.  SIAN THOMAS proprietor.   k


13***  GREENWICH and its MEAN TIME.

 The observatory was originally created  for those in the sight line to synchronize clocks to GMT.  Meridian Line/Time Line/0 degrees longitude.  The Meridian Line is the half of an imaginary GREAT CIRCLE on the earth’s surface terminated by the North and South Poles connecting points of equal longitude.  PRIME MERIDIAN.- I think that’s what those people were straddling.   How does this equate with my favorite International Date Line?  Now that straddle would be a lot more significant – from one day to the next – but obviously not practical.  Of course, it’s not even a different time zone.  Oh, I do love thinking about time.  I often play with the concept when I’m flying – time zips around like crazy.

14***DO A COST COMPARISON  - Seabourn and Silver Sea  for future reference. - probably impossible but I’m putting it on my list.  Also research other small ship lines.  And I wonder if there’s such a thing as a cab in any of these places if we see fit to return for a better visit.  Silver  Sea: I think there’s a good chance it costs as much as twice more than  Seabourn – and Seabourn I’ll bet is hardly comparable to the others.  A cost comparison  would be desirable but may be extremely difficult to accomplish.  I’d feel better.  Of course you do pay for all this – we must work this out

15*** NAPRADA – IN ULLAPOOL is still hanging fire.   I haven’t a clue and will probably continue to be so unless I have a sudden brain storm – it happens.  I would dearly love to get to the bottom of this one – maybe I’ll just have to be patient.