We arrived in Stornoway and set about finding the location of the Harris Tweed Authority. When we got there it looked as though it was closed for the weekend - but we were in luck - someone was behind the closed doors! As it turned out Suzanne had a very interesting and productive meeting with the Lorna, Director of the Harris Tweed Authority who, it turns out, is related to a family friend of mine (small world!) - so that added to the mix! Not being directly involved in the making or selling of anything Tweed,I found the discussion about the production and promotion of the Harris Tweed industry, plus future plans for further promotion of the brand, very interesting.
Satisfied that the main objective of being in Stornoway had been achieved Suzanne set about showing me some of the highlights of the Isle of Lewis.
We visited the Lewis Loom Centre - a place that's hard to describe. Is it a museum, a junk shop, a fabric shop? I'm not sure, but it is very old, very odd, a bit random and very chaotic. I have little doubt that the owner knows just exactly what everything is, and where it is, should you need to know more!
Had we more time to spend there I know it would have been very interesting but we still had ground to cover, places to see - we were inside, it was dry outside and the sun was still shining......!
I loved the simple handwritten notes and notices, some with scribbled corrections, and I particularly like this photograph with the handwritten note drawing your attention to Prince Andrew's signature pinned above it - alongside that of David Dimbleby - whose name isn't given quite the same prominence! (Click on photograph for a closer look)
We stopped awhile in An Lanntair, Stornoway's Arts Centre. Then we drove to Borve to visit the Borgh Pottery
Then, as an absolute bonus and unbeknown to me, Suzanne decided that we just might be able to make it to see the Standing Stones of Callanish as the sun was going down. I can't describe how incredible it felt to be in such a place at such a time. Conditions were absolutely perfect - dry, no wind and the setting sun. We had the place to ourselves, the only two there, so we were able to wander freely with our own thoughts amongst these monolithic structures - erected some 3,000 to 4,000 years ago! - close enough to be able to touch the stones if we wished; surrounded by absolute awe-inspiring beauty, in the stillness of the night and in complete and utter silence.
Rarely, if ever, have I experienced such a moment - ethereal, calming and completely breathtaking!