View across the Outer Harbour of Stornoway

Friday, 17 April 2009

Post 500

Who would have thought that? Less than 7 months after opening this blog, I've now reached my 500th post. Yes, 6 months and 17 days is the time since we were told to get lost by AOL.

What I wanted to write about was my experiences in historical research. This evening, I was processing the pictures of wargraves that I took at Barvas this afternoon. I came across one, for Donald McDonald Paterson, who died on 30 November 1944. He served with the Royal Canadian Ordnance Corps, and was 48 years of age.

Trying to get more information about this man is proving a challenge. Veteran Affairs Canada is my first port of call for any Canadian casualty. All Canadian personnel that signed up for the First World War have their attestation papers (signing up papers) shown on the web. Not so for the Second World War - I presume for reasons of privacy. You have to travel to Ottawa to see those. Well, I do intend to visit Canada one day, but not at the moment. So, I am now looking closer to home. The Isle of Lewis has a dozen historical societies (Comunn Eachdraidh in Gaelic), and I have just emailed the one that covers Barvas, to see if they can shed further light on Private Paterson.

Visit to Barvas

Went to Barvas this afternoon, once again to visit a graveyard. Collected 29 images of wargraves, or war casualties remembered on family gravestones. It was breezy, but the sun helped to keep it agreeable. The cemetery at Barvas is draped over sanddunes, and offers nice views southwest along the coast.

Loch Mor Barabhais with Brue on the skyline

Stream in the machair

Along the shoreline

Former church in Upper Barvas, now a home (for sale, again)

Road north out of Barvas

More pictures here - still being uploaded at time of posting

Nor'easter - Friday 17 April

It is spring and we're having the usual weather. A cold northeasterly wind and bright and clear weather. Temperature 9C / 48F at the moment, which I prefer to the muggy, thundery weather of lower latitudes in this country. I am told that for 6 weeks in May and June 2008 there was NO rain at all in Lewis.

I am disappointed to note that Barack Obama will not prosecute those implicated in the use of torture as an interrogation 'technique'. Wonder what lies behind that, I do not.

Women with excessive hairgrowth (hirsutism) are advised to check with their doctors as it may be due to a hormonal imbalance with various underlying causes. Read the article for more info.