Over the sea to …..Harris!

I first visited the Isle of Harris in The Outer Hebrides in the 1980’s but it wasn’t until I revisited them 12 years ago that I truly fell in love with this Scottish Island. Over the years I have visited many islands in Scotland and around the world but Harris is one I find myself being drawn to again and again. Luckily, my husband shares this love so I regularly manage to get a Harris ‘fix’.

What makes it special?

I suppose one thing is its beautiful beaches. Even on the dullest, rainiest day the sand has a magical luminescence that just never fails to lift my spirits.

Traigh MheileinThe colour of the water is absolutely amazing and definitely makes one think of much warmer climes!

Harris beach.

 

 

Another is the people who live up to their Gaelic saying:

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– ‘a hundred thousand welcomes’ although to be honest this applies to my experiences of the inhabitants of other islands too.

Added to this is their trust in humanity. Sadly, something that was very evident in my town during my childhood, but nowadays not very apparent. Coming across ‘honesty’ shops lifted my spirits to think that someone had such faith in their fellow humans to be honest and pay for the goods they wished to take.

This lovely food shop had crabs, lobsters, scallops, salmon as well as newly baked bread, rolls, cakes and quiche. Such a joy to find.

Food Honesty Shop at Northton.

Food Honesty Shop at Northton.

and further along the road this little honesty shop stuffed full with all kinds of handmade items including Harris Tweed bags and jackets.

A cornucopia of handmade goods.

A cornucopia of handmade goods.

Even using a camping place is left to your conscience whether you pay or not….

Camping fees on trust.

Camping fees on trust.

As a lover of textiles a visit to Harris is always a great opportunity to add a few pieces of the world famous Harris Tweed to my fabric stash!

Beautiful, Harris Tweed.

Beautiful, Harris Tweed.

I suppose,though, when you have a liking for a place it’s more than a few ‘concrete’ reasons but more a feeling of ‘belonging’ or ‘feeling at home’ that makes it a place that you want to return too. For me, Harris is definitely one of those places and one that I can imagine I will continue to visit for a very long time.

If you’re reading this I would love to hear what your special island/place is:)

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First signs of winter.

Living in the north of Saudi and 2000 feet above sea level we experience a few cold months usually from November through til March. This year, the temperature has stayed unseasonably high but now there is a definite chill in the air and signs of the approaching winter months are all around.

The leaves on the pomegranate tree have changed colour.

The leaves on the pomegranate tree have changed colour.


The mandarine oranges are ripening.

The mandarine oranges are ripening.


And in the downtown shops the traditional Arab coats, called Farwa, are on sale.
This year's range include some bright colours.

This year’s range include some bright colours.


I went with the intention of buying 1 to take home and ended up buying 2!
My bright Syrian farwa.

My bright Syrian farwa.


And the back view.image
And also from Syria a more conservative farwa.image
I doubt that I will ever wear them out and about in UK unless it’s to a fancy dress party but for summer evenings in the garden they will be great to keep any slight chills at bay:)
So how cold does it get in Tabuk? Today it was a minimum of 6 and a maximum of 19, but later in the week they’re forecasting 0 degrees! Time to put the sandals away for a few months I think!

Shopping and storm

Spent the morning in town shopping. Hadn’t been shopping since about July!!- well in Tabuk that is! Also stopped by the tailor to get a dress copied- a handy facility that beats any western tailoring in price but perhaps nt always in quality. My dresses should b ready on Monday as they’ll b closed for a couple f days fr Eid.
Managed a wee bit of study in the afternoon before going for a massage. Just a I was about to go the rain started. By the time I left te salon there were huge puddles everywhere ad te thunder and lightning started. Weirdly this happened yesterday about the same time and it’s forecast for tomorrow too! Spent over half an hour watching the lightning from the upstairs bedroom and attempted to catch some f it on photo. Paul and I reminisced How we regularly used to get amazing lightning storms when we lived on the airbase in the 80’s and 90’s but hadn’t seen many for years. We’re now wondering if we’ll see any ‘wadi action’ on our way to Aqaba on Wednesday.

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