While the vegetable garden got a hammering of several inches of rain last week, I managed to avoid it with a last-minute holiday. Not the Caribbean. Nor the Mediterranean. No. I went instead to what is normally one of the wettest places in the UK. By some small miracle it managed to stay relatively dry while the rest of the British Isles suffered.
I went to The Orkney Isles. Orkney is up above the North East Coast of Scotland, a scattering of islands between the mainland and Shetland. Remote, windswept, bleak and (at first) featureless. It took 3 days, of driving and sailing, to get there. It takes almost as long to acclimatise, even in good weather, but once you do its treasures reveal themselves. (Imagine a slowly unravelling Fair Isle knit, caught on a rusty barbed wire fence.)
I stayed at the Nice Man’s holiday house on the island of Westray. There’s very little vegetable matter in evidence on the island. Either growing or in the shop (singular intended). But they export excellent beef, fish and wool. And make cakes to die for. Go for the carrot cake to keep scurvy at bay.
If you’d like to see more of wonderful Westray please wander over to the Nice Man’s blog, The Hall of Einar.