august days (1)

While I was away I read a book by George Mackay Brown, an Orkney writer who was mostly responsible for my first trip to Orkney. I love his writings, and each time I go I buy a few extra books.

This time I bought The First Wash of Spring, the fourth and final book of his weekly columns in the local newspaper. I love these little snippets of daily life, and I suppose this blog is in a way my own attempt at documenting my thoughts and days.

A few of the columns in this book were split into days, with just a sentence or two for each day of that week. I like the idea of pinning down small pieces of life, and so I’m going to do that myself for August, and if I like it, I might carry on.

My weeks will run Thursday to Thursday, simply because the first day of August was a Thursday, and because Fridays are my free day each week. I’m not going to worry about photographs for these posts because I want them to be straightforward and simple. Feel free to join in and post a link to your week!

Thursday 1st

Caught an early ferry to Hoy, drove along single track roads through the hills to Rackwick, and enjoyed a windswept walk on an empty beach. Had lunch at a cheery cafe in a fascinating small museum. A wet day, and a dreary evening, so we lit the fire and watched a film.

Friday 2nd

Spent the morning packing the car. The sun came out at lunchtime and we could hear the waves on the shore. The sea glittered. Met Fay for a walk along the shore with her adorable dogs. Ate tea in the garden for our last night in the cottage.

Saturday 3rd

Rather choppy trip on the ferry. I stood on deck and held the rails and looked at the horizon rather than the swaying boat, and told myself the staff looked calm so we must be ok. Quite relieved to reach land. We drove for thirteen hours through sunshine and rain and finally reached home at 10pm. Pretty impressed that I cleaned the house and changed the sheets before leaving. Discovered a friend had left surprise bunting in our garden.

Sunday 4th

A shower – my first for a week! (I was washing on holiday, honestly). Sat by the kitchen window and read magazines that had arrived while we were away – Country Living, Permaculture, and the local Wildlife Trust newsletter. Decided to tackle the enormous cabbage mountain we brought home, and made sauerkraut. Somehow this led to defrosting the freezer, and somehow that took most of the day.

Monday 5th

Measured the garden for a greenhouse, and realised the one I wanted just would not fit anywhere sensible. Spotted a nest high in the acer – could it be from the goldfinches that we often saw in the spring? Walked into town, and felt hot and bothered by the mass of people there. Bought an epilator. Relieved to get home, even without the miniature greenhouse I went for.

Tuesday 6th

First day back at work. For once I got up early enough for a slow amble (rather than a half-running dash) to the station – I must remember to do that more often. A nice day of catching up and lunch with a cheerful office mate. Why do cafes give you so much cottage cheese on a baked potato? I must have had an entire tub on mine. Five miles of walking today – a bit of a change from two weeks of loafing.

Wednesday 7th

Worked at home, but struggled to concentrate. Missed being on holiday, and was not enjoying sitting in front of computer screen. Made initial attempts to turn my old blog into a book (just a print out for me, not a real book!) Shared meal at the community garden in the evening, and we sat and talked as the sun went behind the trees. Found out about a new permaculture project not far from here – must arrange a visit. Tried new epilator for the first time and instantly regretted it. My sister called me a big wuss.

Thursday 8th

Back to the office, this time without cheery office pal who was working at home. Again, got up early enough to stroll to the station, and enjoyed the walk. Had weetabix for breakfast with strawberries, and blackcurrants from the community garden. We grow so many! I must freeze some, and add some to gin. Forgot to take my diary to work and felt bereft and useless. Spoke to my dad, who told me my nan had rung to ask where the ladders from the garden where. No, she wasn’t planning to climb them, but couldn’t see them. They were sold 20 years ago.

I’ve enjoyed writing some things that have been occupying my mind this week, and I hope it hasn’t been too tedious to read! If you fancy joining in, please do, and stick a link back here so we can all pop round for a nosy – I do so love reading about other people’s everyday lives.

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