Tuesday, May 15, 2007


A shadow on the hillside. Much of the island is uninhabited. No sound but from the lambs.

The beach at Calgary where, this morning, I saw the footprints of deer who come down from the hills in the night to feed on the rich pasture of the machair. My footprints too, walking into the clear water.

Is this an oxymoron? Moving on again tomorrow, back to the mainland, to Ardnamurchan, then home. There are places you pass through that live inside you forever. You don't know until you have left them.


Ms Melancholy said...

Beautiful sea, beautiful pictures. I can imagine the cold as you dip your toe in, even though it looks positively Mediterranean. By the way, check out Mr Moon - you have won a prize! Well done, it was a beautifully written piece.

david santos said...

It places fhoto of Madeleine in your bloggue

Missing Madeleine!
Madeleine, MeCann was abduted from Praia da Luz, Portugal on 03/03/07.

If you have any information about her whereabouts, please contact Crimestoppers on 0800555111 Please Help

The Periodic Englishman said...

Oh, these are beautiful RTS - and you are clearly very brave to go into the water. Your toes must surely still be blue?

Anna MR alerted me to these pictures of yours. They provoke a stabbing homesickness in me. I think they may well have had the same effect on a friend of mine (now living in Hong Kong), who came here to look, also.

I hope this has been a soothing and heartwarming break for you, Signs - it certainly sounds as if it might have been. And the birds do speak differently, don't they?

More pictures, more pictures, more pictures.....(stamping my feet now, demandingly)

Kind regards and buckets of warmth,


That's so pants said...

Gorgeous. Jealous. Cow. Love You.



Anonymous said...

I agree with Pants.

I agree with Ms Melancholy as well -- your story was absolutely lovely. It was one of my favs. I was sooooo glad to find out it was yours. I loved it.

I don't agree with David Santos though. Sorry.

Collin said...

Beautiful photos.

That's so pants said...

Hi Signs

I've just read that you won 2nd prize in the Moon Topples comp - many congratulations



Reading the Signs said...

thanks, dear ms melancholy - and for your comment on my story too.

Mr. P.E. - I will try and inflict more homesickness soon (have a good one of a fish and chip van in Tobermory) - and how lovely to see you here again.

Pants :) xxx

friend goodthomas, I saw the generous comments you made.

hi collin, thanks - I'll try and put up a few more.

Miranda said...

I am the friend in Hong Kong of whom TPE speaks, and he's right - your pictures were beautiful and induced waves of longing for a place where I spent every summer in the 1970s.

There's nothing like seeing photos of somewhere (Iona high street, in my case) where you ran barefoot as a child (on the way to the sweetshop, again, in my case).

Reading the Signs said...

Miranda, hi - and you must also be she who has been talking Shakespeare over at TPE's, nice to see you here.

Mull was lovely, somehow darker and deeper than Iona - but Iona is the place I'll go back to for sure. Were you (your folks) part of the Iona Community, by any chance?

Anna MR said...

Oh, Ms Signs, do oblige these Scots, I have only been to Scotland once but they have inflicted me with their homesickness (I think I may have a tendency to take homesickness onboard). Please...

Reading the Signs said...

Scotland is like that, you know. Once you have been there you're always a bit homesick for it. In fact I think some people get like that who have never even been there.

Yes, I'm getting round to it - I've got to (damn, do I have to admit this?) get the help of Mr. Signs.

The Periodic Englishman said...

Ouch - that must have hurt you to admit to such a thing, Signs. Forgive me, though, whilst I cheer loudly on behalf of men everywhere.

That is a very strange thing you just said, by the way - the thing about the possibility of being homesick for a yet-to-be-visited place. I know exactly what you mean. It is definitely possible to feel such a thing, however utterly bizarre it may seem to do so. I think maybe Anna MR has said something vaguely similar to me in the past.

"Homesick" itself may not be the correct word, I suppose, but the feeling is identical and the longing just as sharp, so that is the word I would use, regardless.

Are you enjoying being hounded by the mob to put your pictures up? I think there are maybe people you can phone and talk to if you find yourself the victim of internet bullying, Signs.

I'm watching you, though. One wrong move - just one - and your front door is kindling. Step away from the phone, Signs, no-one can help you now.......

The Enforcer

(hello to Miranda and Anna, too - fellow enforcers)

Reading the Signs said...

Right, Mr. P.E. A little task for you coming up (enforcer, huh?)

Miranda said...

Nice concept. You could call it "deja homesick", if that were not such a deeply ugly phrase. "Homesick" itself is not a good enough word either. We need a new one to encapsulate that heady combination of nostalgia, longing, sadness and exhilaration.

Reading the Signs said...

I don't think the English language can deal with the concept, Miranda - have a look above.

Liz said...

Good to see another sign!

Miranda said...

Sehnsucht is perfect, thank you. Wikipedia's entry for the word is worth a read.

Anna MR said...

May I also suggest the Welsh term hiraeth? It would have a nice touch of Celtic conceptual continuity, too.

Like dear Englishman, I am mighty pleased that our Bullying Gang of Three, with our various tactics, have squeezed out such a fabulous result. Thank you, dear Signs. Incidentally, when you say "how do I enlarge them once they are up", do you mean to view them? You will kick yourself when I tell you all you need to do is click on them with your mouse cursor...If you meant how do you post them up in a larger format, you choose that when uploading (Blogger gives you a choice of sizes and positionings).

Keep playing with the Blogger functions, honey Signs - if things go wrong, you can always delete quickety-quick and no-one's to know.

Climbing further up to add my comment to the Homesick For Unseen Places Blues.


Anna MR said...

Oh damnety-damn. You will have to excuse my foul language, but the link I posted is not as ready for use as I'd thought. If trying it out, be prepared to click "New Search" and write the word in the space provided. Oh, technology has its hateful sides when things just aren't smooth and beautiful like you plan them to be.