Tuesday, February 17, 2009


A Favourite Chair

This photo is on my desk at all times, within an easy gaze of my eye. To me it is a therapeutic talisman. When I am on the phone, or with my head bent over a particularly exacting piece of work, it is such the welcome distraction and certain antidote to any stressful emotion I could possibly conjure forth. I simply stop, put down my work, and stare. Slowly, softly, I begin to remember the smell of the moist, salty air rising up the hill from the sea, on the wind I hear the bleating of the ewes just past the fence and I sit down for a moment in that little chair, tilt back my head and let the sun shine its golden light onto my face while that remarkable wind blows every care I could ever have far, far away. If I have the time, I just might venture inside. Oh, I know the magical interior of this modest stone building isn’t visible in the photograph, but it is there in technicolour in my memory. Like walking inside a fluffy kaleidoscope, I see the wooden shelves, floor to ceiling, stuffed with rainbows and colour wheels of hand-dyed yarns. The sheep outside have a distinct right to sing out loudly, for it is their own wool that helps to supply this wonderland, wool whose colours are dyed from the flowers and herbs that grow along the old wooden fence. I have knitted a scarf or two from these fabulous yarns, but this past autumn I decided to add a few more arrows to my quiver and enrolled in a couple of serious, no fooling around knitting classes. Two of them. It had been one of those annual resolutions that never seemed to get done, until this year, and what a grand time I’ve been having. Who knew knitting was so much fun? I now find myself looking forward to evenings spent by the fire with needles ablaze. So the next time I walk through this magic little door I will be ready for much grander things.
And believe me, I cannot wait for the next time.

Shilasdair
Waternish, Isle of Skye


40 comments:

  1. I can see you sitting there in that chair and now perhaps knitting up a storm - isn't it wonderful when you find the thing that makes you happy?

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  2. What a gorgeous spot! I adore Scotland and would hap'ly return to the people and the place.
    I've been meaning to take a knitting class as well. You've just inspired me to seek one out (I've got tons of gorgeous yarns in the closet; I only lack the skill).

    Kat

    P.S. Come for a visit and read my "Blog-traveller" post.

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  3. Wish I could write as poetically and succint as in your article (but since English is my 2nd language, I'm doing well when I can express/verbalize what I mean)About knitting, you may enjoy my post "From the Beginning to the End."

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  4. I know how lovely your little piece of heaven is. I bought a hand knitted scarf when I was in Portree, it has the colours of the landscape woven in it. Now I am getting Scotlanditus. (Scotland withdrawal symptoms)

    Say hello to Edward from me, tell him that his photo lifts my spirits. The joey de vie of dogs!

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  5. What a lovely place. Can I join you?

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  6. VERY nice blog. Good to see a fellow natural blonde.

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  7. I can just imagine the colours of those yarns. Earthy, woody, heather flecked.
    I've always wanted to pay a visit to the Isle of Skye
    x

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  8. It is always good for the soul to have a special spot to which we can escape in our mind in times of stress or ennui.
    How exciting to add knitting to your repertoire! I do hope to do the same someday if I can find classes.

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  9. Maybe sometime you will show us your knitted creations.... alas I can only knit scarves and those sturdy and wonderful kitchen cloths... but a very relaxing thing to do... Enjoy!

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  10. Beautiful place. It's good to be able to escape inside your head to somewhere far, far away.

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  11. Gorgeous photo! Good luck with the knitting. You must show us pix of the finished products!

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  12. Don't know how I found your blog but I am so glad I did. Your writing is so beautiful and lyrical. I am enjoying it tremendously. I am a self-taught knitter hence the left sleeve is shorter than the right or some such nonsense on most of my projects. Need to sign up for a class and learn the right way to "click-it":)

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  13. lovely writing, I love Skye, in fact we're going there again in May...

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  14. Pamela, how lovely! I am glad you have found the gentle art of knitting. One can talk, think or daydream while listening to music, your hands busy doing their own work.
    Most of our pets are Leicester long wool and India does her magic on it with plants from my garden, when there were some, and Eucalyptus dyes from our plantatins. Very satisfying wearing jumpers straight from a friendly sheep's back.

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  15. What a fabulous pic. I have put it on my desktop for a wee while, hope you don't mind. I've not been to Skye but hope to one day.

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  16. It's easy to see why you're so swept away simply by looking at this photo.

    (kisses to Edward)

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  17. what a sweet place, it's so perfect and with a sea view as well? what can get better? ;)

    xx

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  18. Heavenly! I can relate to your bliss.

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  19. What a lovely, peaceful spot. Knitting is a great hobby and too often passed over for more exciting pastimes. Good luck with it :)

    Kim x

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  20. Hello P&E,

    You photo does look inviting! As I read, I wondered which place I would choose as an escape hatch. I must go through my photographs and try and find one!

    The knitting, I'll leave to you!

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  21. Such a gorgeous spot and photo!

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  22. I need that chair. I may just have to copy this photo and put it on my bulletin board so I can get away too. I hope you don't mind!

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  23. Hello Terry and Edward,

    I was doing my usual "roaming of the blogs" when I happened to wander onto yours. How DELIGHTFUL! The beautiful pictures and photographs, the wonderful musings, and the "so" handsome Edward have made my visit here quite memorable and enjoyable! And I admit to also be a constant dreamer of Scotland and desire to be there...oh so much. Thank you for such a nice visit. I am tagging your wonderful site so that I may visit again soon.

    All good wishes to you both,
    Paula
    http://paulasserendipity.blogspot.com
    www.tennesseebb.com

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  24. Everyone needs a tailsman like this. Thank you for another wonderful glimpse into your world.

    And, my dear kindred spirit, I have also taken up needlework as well, in the form of embroidery. My maternal Grandmother was a master at embroidery arts but I only dabbled before ( and poorly at that). However, this year I decided that the resolution I would make, and stick with, is to truly learn the ins and outs of embroidery. I even joined the Emroiders' Guild of America...

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  25. Pamela, I have always wanted to go “over the sea to Skye.” The cottage looks so lovely. That’s fun how you can bring part of it back with you, knitting your memories like colorful tales.

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  26. You are just amazing! My current screen saver is from one of your postings but seeing this one lets me know that it is time for a change!!!

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  27. I have a photo that helps me escape too - to Antigua...Yours looks like a special place to go...

    Have fun at the knitting classes...I've always wanted to learn how to knot socks...

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  28. Love that picture. and sitting in front of a fire sounds good either way, even with blazing needles! LOL.

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  29. I would be in heaven everyday if I thought there was a chance for me to spend a few hours in such a beautiful part of the world.

    I have mental images from past travels that I conjure up whenever I need a mini break...one particular day when the sun was shining and I was with friends in an enchanting place is one memory I think of often.

    I've always wanted to learn to knit. Recently I got out the crochet hooks again. I've been having a wonderful time trying out new patterns.

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  30. Lovely photo- and a perfect spot for a little respite. I love the click, click of the needles and can picture you in front of the fire.

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  31. Isn't the imagination a wonderful companion? A friend that can transport us anywhere at anytime.

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  32. Those old stone walls are so beautiful. I understand knitting is a very soothing activity, with a nice garment reward at the end of it to boot. I hope you get back there sooner than you think....

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  33. I've heard such wonderful things about the Isle of Skye. You have a most beautiful spot there!
    I've been thinking lately about knitting again. But, do I need to wear yet another hat?!
    Catherine

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  34. Lovely peaceful photograph. I can imagine the beauty of shelves packed with hand-dyed yarns, all the colours of the rainbow.

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  35. I love this picture. I can almost smell the fresh clean air and feel the crisp chill of the morning as I sit in the chair and enjoy the view. I need a picture like this to carry in my mind as I step over the trash in the streets of Lima's central market district on my way to work.

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  36. Wonderful! It sounds like my sort of place filled with colour and ideas for future projects. It's good that you have such an inspirational place to help you achieve your goal.

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  37. Sounds lovely. I have a spot like that of my own, I can mentally escape to when need be. This one is especially surreal.

    I've added you to my favorites :)

    Michelle

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  38. Scottish wool is the best in the world, and a sweater warms on the coldest of days.

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  39. What a beautiful spot - and what a good idea to have a photo right there as inspiration. (I need to find my own equivelant... hmmmm....)

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  40. beautiful place to lose yourself.... I remember the days of spinning and knitting or weaving wool from my own sheep.. a satisfaction for the soul, for sure... and no one knows when you walk down the street or over the hill that you have these connections to this garment keeping you warm... but you.. a secret satisfaction......

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I love to read your comments! Each and every one!