Pilgrimage…

We are just back from a lovely holiday week spent in sunny Englandshire- firstly Northumberland, then Yorkshire and finally Lancashire. We swam in the sea, climbed mountains, and made the pilgrimage to Lindisfarne, barefoot over the sands (with some mud!) at low tide.

It was great to spend some time with my lovely family doing seaside things- and to appreciate again how lovely England is, with its layers of history laid down in a rolling landscape and in buildings of stone and brick.

We also fitted in celebrating the wedding of our friends Stacey and Bob. Congratulations to them as they start their married life together.

Here are a few photos- particularly of the magical walk over the sands to the Holy Island;

East coasting…

We have just spent a couple of days over on the East Coast with my brother and his wife (and wee Jamie.) They live in Haddington, and took us for a day out in North Berwick, a lovely seaside town with a proper beach, a tiny harbour and even though it is quite a posh place it still had that evocative seaside smell- a combination of fried food, seaweed, and salt.

We walked the beach and encountered a faire set up to make money for the lifeboat society, so we joined in. I won the welly wanging contest (and Will won the junior one too!) I am thinking that this really should be an Olympic sport. Our prizes were two £5 ice cream vouchers.

Just off shore from North Berwick is Bass Rock- a small island famous for it’s Stevenson lighthouse, and its vast colony of Gannets. When you first look out at the island, it looks like it is covered in snow.

 

Then when you look a bit closer, you realise that what you are seeing are thousands and thousands of nesting Gannets. It is simply stunning.

 

Statistically speaking…

Today is the 4 year anniversary of this blog. As a birthday present, I thought it appropriate to go for a new header- a cropped part of this photo;

We bloggers have a guilty secret called statistics. Sure, our motivation as we write is absolutely pure and totally high minded, but it also kind of helps for this to be represented numerically!

WordPress give you a whole range of different means of measuring your success (or lack of it.) Here are some of mine;

All time visits; 260,628

Busiest day; 1,029 (April 23rd 2012)

Number of posts; 1338

Number of comments; 1685

So there you go. The secret is out.

One step from eternity…

We have just been here;

Along with some friends, we spent the long weekend camping on the Ross of Mull, overlooking Iona- which is the most beautiful place I have ever been to.

And here is the evidence;

We walked a lot, swam, ate, cooked bread and baked spuds in makeshift ovens made of sand and driftwood fires.

Whilst there we heard of the mother of one of us having become seriously ill in hospital. The distance and ferries stopped any rush to her bedside- all that was possible was to stay and pray. To sit in such beauty with such a burden must have been an incredible rush of emotions- but it felt as though the place, and our community, was holding us.

We are delayed only by our hearts beating.

And each one beats with all the treasure of the universe.