On wind and wings, bovines and beaches. A look back on Barra and time spent in the Outer Hebrides

The opening, ideally fit for a child, dwarf or hobbit to squeeze through, revealed a confusing-to-me instrument panel below a narrow windshield. I knew there was a pilot even though I saw only an arm dressed in a short-sleeved, crisp white shirt. She pushed forward on the throttle. The engine came alive filling the snug …

Continue reading On wind and wings, bovines and beaches. A look back on Barra and time spent in the Outer Hebrides

Sand, sky, sheep and sheer terror: averting misadventures on a (leisurely?) hike to Huisinis Beach

Did I screw up and misread the fine print? Did I sign up for a mountain climbing course or learn to impersonate a mountain goat? Those thoughts flashed through my mind as I carefully picked my way along a narrow, rock-covered track that rose, fell and curved along a steep mountain. I glanced up to …

Continue reading Sand, sky, sheep and sheer terror: averting misadventures on a (leisurely?) hike to Huisinis Beach

Stumbling my way through the mists of time. Or: It’s a wee wet, windy and wobbly walking among the ancients — black houses, brochs and standing stones of the Isle of Lewis, Outer Hebrides

A pleasant scent - moist and earthy - signaled that peat was burning. A marker depicted an interior. Despite the homely scene - smiling occupants - I wasn't convinced that living in such circumstances was as lovely as it would have us believe.

Through wind and rain, over hills, valleys, shingle and sand: Tales of a walking holiday in the Outer Hebrides

Ripples of turquoise waves, edged with white froth, rolled onto a broad expanse of empty, white sand. Wisps of white clouds streaked a vivid blue sky. In the background, rolling hills lay in gray-green shadow. Long ago, it was this picture that first alerted me to the presence of the Outer Hebrides, islands of the north-west coast of Scotland.

Cotswolds Sojourns

Weeping Willows, branches trailing in the gentle current of the clear river Coln; birds flittered and twittered between leafy boughs; the meadow, lush and wet, was a carpet of clover, forget-me-nots and dandelions; yellow daffodils and primroses in lavender, red, white and yellow adorned pots and  borders  fronting  dark, honey-colored stone cottages.