Orkney: Skara Brae

I didn’t get a picture of the seal who was bobbing up and down in the waves, but it was a sunny blustery day and I found Skara Brae very inspiring as well as fascinating. We had a lovely day there, including lunch in the café (mmmm, salmon). I was less interested in the manor house, but even there I found things to interest me (but that will have to wait as I chose so many of the site today). Thanks to Mary and Amy for a wonderful trip.

2013-10-24 11.47.44

A reconstruction of House 7 to give a sense of what the homes would look like.

2013-10-24 11.48.23

You may not think of stone as a warm hearth but the houses were large and cozy, and on a wind-whistling day like we had, warm.

2013-10-24 11.49.54

Spacious, too!

2013-10-24 11.54.18

Museums have embraced the idea of narrative as an organising principle. The walk shows how far apart in time many “old” events are — and how much beyond them Skara Brae is.

2013-10-24 11.58.11

Yep, older than Stonehenge.

2013-10-24 11.59.36

The sea has claimed some of the settlement (and rising ocean levels threaten more), but you get a sense of the organisation of it here.

2013-10-24 12.00.42

The turf protects the stones from the elements; the preservation efforts fight a slow losing battle.

2013-10-24 12.01.17

There’s such a beauty in the graceful curves.

2013-10-24 12.01.53

No wonder my imagination tries to bring it all back to life.

2013-10-24 12.03.04

Imagine this as your front garden with seals and seabirds.

2013-10-24 12.04.17

All the houses follow the same model but each one shows a variation on the theme.

2013-10-24 12.06.19

Four rainbows that day: a natural phenomenon that nonetheless delights.

2013-10-24 12.10.40

The stone shelves were used for storing food but also for displaying objects that meant something to the folks who lived there.

2013-10-24 12.12.49

In the distance Skaill House, where the modern people lived.

2013-10-24 12.20.17

How you know you’re not in America; people are trusted to be sensible.

2013-10-24 12.32.21

We were lucky with the weather; although cold and blustery it stayed dry — not bad for late October in the north.

4 thoughts on “Orkney: Skara Brae

Comments are closed.