Iceland 3 – sheep roundup

Preface: The sheep roundups we saw were highlights of my time in Iceland, and also emotionally difficult for me. As much as we textile folk hear about Icelandic wool, the primary market is meat, principally lamb. Most of the four-month-old lambs born last spring leave the roundup area on trucks headed for the slaughterhouse, or … Read more

Iceland 2 – miscellany

The last post gave an overview of geography and travel. This will grab a few random impressions. The next one will dig into content. I’m warming up—! Reykjavik served as base of operations for the beginning and ending of the trip. It has a lot of touristy shops, and some others, like the one operated … Read more

Iceland 1 – orientation

The final eleven days of my trip ended up packed full of experiences. Two were essentially travel days. On the first I went from Scotland to Heathrow airport near London, then flew into Keflavik, Iceland’s international airport, and took a Flybus into Reykjavik proper. On the final day I reversed the Flybus route and then … Read more

Scottish Highlands 2

A welcoming sight in a B&B: a well-behaved rescue Border collie who knows where to hide herself when there are guests who are not comfortable around dogs . . . and where to get comfortable (below) when the guests display a distinct fondness for good dogs (and might possibly be missing their own). (Trying to … Read more

Scottish Highlands 1

The time came to leave Shetland. I flew into Aberdeen, rented a car, and met up with Jeni Reid. As I noted in an out-of-sequence post earlier, we went to visit a flock of Valais Blacknose sheep, which were hard to photograph only because they were so friendly. We tore ourselves away and kept moving … Read more

Rambling around Shetland, 4–sheep

While I was in Shetland, I also watched sheep—in addition to those I saw at the Cunningsburgh show. I could have spent the whole time running around looking at flocks, but I had other types of research to do that needed to precede the conversations I might have with the sheep and their people (for … Read more

On not getting to Fair Isle or Foula

This post is about why I didn’t get to either Fair Isle or Foula, two of the locations on my “must see” list when I arrived in Shetland. They're both islands that are part of Shetland but at some distance from the primary vertical cluster of islands. I did know that “must see” would have … Read more

Rambling around Shetland, 3–flexible planning

The key to success for my recent trip to Shetland consisted of two parts: (1) a series of goals, defined yet amenable to constant modification, and (2) a very flexible schedule. For example, on my first visit to see a particular flock of sheep at Burland Croft Trail, it was raining; I didn’t have the … Read more

Rambling around Shetland, 2

When I was in Shetland last October for Shetland Wool Week, there was so much going on that I didn't have much opportunity at the Shetland Museum and Archives to do more than notice where the textile collection was and wave "see you later" at it. This time I followed up on that promise. Then … Read more

Rambling around Shetland, 1

During my time in Shetland, I focused on things I could not do elsewhere, because the time was short and precious. But there were also hours when none of the places I needed to access was open, or errands needed to be done (food, post office, map acquisition), and so on. Also my lack of … Read more