During the festive period, we usually plan a visit to Graemsay to spend a day with those stars of wonder Sian and Button of Life on a Small Island. This year was no exception.
The Saturday morning boat bound for Hoy and Graemsay leaves the picturesque location of Stromness at 09.30, so as we wandered down to the harbour, the sun was just rising. Several squally showers were pulsing through, which lent a Turner-esque feel to the scene.
As you can see, there wasn't a breath of wind, so the ferry crossing was relatively smooth, only the tidal race into Scapa Flow causing any gentle rocking action (for a topical musical note, think more the Rocking Carol, rather than the Queen stadium anthem).
Once ensconced at Chez Sian, there were a few DIY tasks with which to be helpful, as I feel it's only right and proper to earn one's keep if accepting the hospitality of a small island community.
Then it was down to Sian's beach, a stretch of rocky foreshore fringed with the most amazing shell sand. Whilst Sian and Our Lass pottered to and fro looking for Groatie Buckies (the shell of the Northern Cowrie sea snail, Trivia arctica), Button and I frolicked about, one of us taking photos, the other pouncing on the occasional bit of unruly shell.
|Clouds over mainland Orkney
|We no longer have to fear the reaper
|The white bits are broken pieces of maerl, the hard remains of a cold water coral
As we returned along the main island road, I managed to capture this shot of Button, which almost seems to show her returning from the Community Hall after a night of carousing.