Adventures in the Shetland Islands


Lerwick, Scotland is part of the Shetland island chain. At first sight, the word “quaint” came to my mind.  When in the city, it is bustling, but still, it has the quaintness factor.

The Scottish brogue is heavier up here, and the Scots are wonderful hosts, and very friendly – happy even.  Happy has got to be challenging this far North. It rains 250 days of the year. Temperatures in August are 59F, foggy, soggy and grey.  Being a California girl, this situation would crush my spirit after a month – maybe less.

We crossed a bridge over to a different island to see the Shetland Ponies.  Our group had an appointment at “Carol’s Ponies.”  All us senior citizens of various countries were excited like little kids.

The long uncomfortable bus ride was worth seeing those precious ponies! I think everyone was touched seeing those sweet almost mythical creatures.  Carol was a small energetic woman.  I could tell she loved her ponies and was proud of them by the way she introduced them to us.

She began at one end of the corral and called each one by name.  All female common names for the most part, like Lilly, Lucy, Marie, and so on. Then she pointed at the baby pony and introduced him as “Bob.”  I was concerned about baby Bob because he kept lying down.  Carol explained that Bob was only 11 weeks old and would run around and play, then tucker out – just like puppies do.

Poor Bob – each time he lied down, his mama nosed him to get up again. I wondered if she was doing that to show him off to the crowd.  I don’t blame her at all, he is a beauty!  Most of the group wanted to smuggle Bob home.

None of us did, though.

Baby Bob

♥  TTFN  ♥

Adventures in the Orkney Islands

The sweet calming scene below was what I saw yesterday for a 30-minute bus ride to Kirkwall, Scotland.  It was a sunny day, for Scotland, meaning clouds but no rain. Each field was a slightly different shade of green and some were quite brilliant.  I have seen farmland before, but this was perfect.

Our bus then stopped for a photo op at a formation of stones  called “The Ring of Brodgar.”

This ancient ring of stones pre-dates Stonehenge and the Pyramids.  This fact startled me!  A lot of things startled me about the British Isles, but I will save that for another post…

Brodgar is protected by a “moat” of soggy swampish ground. We could stare and take pix of them, even walk around them, but we could not touch.

We saw a few long-haired cows on the ride home who had partially shed their coats.  They looked so pitiful they were cute. Initially, we thought they had mange.

This cow was shy, so I could not photograph her rear where the long shaggy hair was remaining.

Compare her front and back legs and her south end.  You can almost see it.

♥  TTFN  ♥