Support Gansey Nation -

Buy Gordon a cuppa!

Many, many thanks to those of you who have already contributed!

North Sea 27: 11 – 17 March

Heb0317aI flew down to Edinburgh last Sunday for a day of meetings on the Monday. I met my colleagues at a pizza chain on Sunday night, and at one point the person next to me looked up and said, ‘You know, I’ve never seen snow falling horizontally before. Or fall up, for that matter.’ (‘Welcome to Scotland,’ I said as I nonchalantly speared a leaf of rocket from my plate.)

In truth the weather was pretty wild, strong winds gusting the snow around like we were living inside a snow globe. (Heading south, the tail wind was enough to shave 20 minutes off an hour-long flight.)

Heb0317dIt wasn’t a great trip, to be honest. Apart from the horrid weather, the citizens of Edinburgh seemed to be taking turns outside my hotel room through the night to shout explicit anatomical instructions, some of which I discovered to be quite hard to achieve on your own. The room’s double glazing was warped and didn’t quite fasten – handy if you wanted to preserve a side of beef for a few days, say, but not to take a shower in comfort (my progress to and from the bathroom resembled a firewalker who’s just discovered halfway down the ramp that someone put a live mouse in his shirt for a joke).

Heb0317cI didn’t take the knitting with me – apart from the whole vexed issue of taking needles on planes, the gansey now weighs about as much as a recently dipped sheep, and the prospect of lugging it around Edinburgh didn’t appeal. So I haven’t made as much progress as I’d have liked (by this stage I’m usually impatient to see it done), but am still well down the sleeve. I don’t think I’ll get it finished this week – quite – but I should still meet my target of Easter.

Heb0317bNext Saturday I’ll be at the Caithness Science Festival Fun Day (‘a day of fun and discovery’, it says on the poster) where the Archives will have a display on maps and mapping from our collections. (‘Archives’ and ‘fun’ aren’t words you usually see in the same sentence, but we’re holding a competition to win an Easter egg – and as scientists have discovered, nothing is more fun than chocolate.)

Heb0317eSpeaking of fun, Nigel has sent some pictures of his gansey sampler taken from patterns in Beth Brown Reinsel’s book, in which you can see Henry the bear posing in his ganseyette. (In fact, I’m hoping Henry will in future emulate the garden gnome from the French film Amelie and appear in a variety of pictures sent back from exotic locations – the Taj Mahal, the Eiffel Tower, Waverley Steps…)

Meanwhile, we scrape the snow off the daffodils and watch the seagulls being blown backwards by the wind, and patiently wait for summer. Or Christmas. Whichever comes first…

7 comments to North Sea 27: 11 – 17 March

  • =Tamar

    You have my sympathy. I’ve been in a hotel like that, except that instead of merely loose glazing, the window was made so that there was a gap an inch wide across the full width, that could not be closed at all. I wound up shoving the pillow into it, which tells you what the pillow was like. I’ve stayed at B&Bs many times and never had one as bad as that hotel. Good luck with the map exhibit.

  • Freyalyn

    “Whichever comes first!” We’re feeling a bit like that too, and we’re only in Yorkshire.

  • Gordon

    Hi Tamar,

    As I discovered, you can always call reception and demand extra heaters! B&Bs are usually better value, nicer and friendlier and not as noisy as hotels. On the other hand, a hotel breakfast buffet that stretches over several trestle tables is a thing of great beauty! Thanks for the good wishes for Saturday. I think I may need them…

    Hang on in there, Freyalyn—I just saw the weather forecast for Friday as a band of rain from the south-west is expected to meet cold air in the east and drop a lot more snow. Time to crank up the hot water bottles!

    Cheers from a chilly Caithness,

  • Gordon

    By the way, Margaret would like to see “Henry and the Ganseyettes” formed as a popular beat combo, Henry on lead vocals, and the Ganseyettes perhaps consisting of three backing singers like the Supremes were for Diana Ross. All we need is someone to design the costumes and Nigel could be on to a winner as their manager (“stick with me kid and you’ll never have to climb a tree for honey again”).


  • =Tamar

    Just don’t let Dolores get involved or the costumes will be NSFW.

  • Marilyn

    OR- Dolores and the Honey Bears. (Gordon, do you know of Dolores? Franklin Habit, the Panopticon blog. I think you’d like him (and her)).
    Nigel, nice ganseyette, all the bears want one now.

  • Gordon

    Hi Tamar & Marilyn,

    I didn’t get the reference at first but yes, I’ve seen the Panopticon blog and the guy is really talented, both in writing, knitting and photography. In fact i think I hate him just a little!

    I like to think that Henry and Dolores had a Sonny and Cher thing going for a while, but Henry became increasingly unreliable owing to the “rock and roll lifestyle”, hem-hem, and after a bad overdose of honey and Sugar Puffs, she booted him out of the band and struck out solo. After a period in rehab, Henry has now cleaned up his act and is modelling ganseys and hoping to break into movies big time.

    He says he’s down to a jar of honey a week, but can quit any time…

Leave a Reply

You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>




This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.