View across the Outer Harbour of Stornoway

Sunday, 19 April 2009

Closing notes

Well, that's it for today. Gone 11pm and time for bed. I've got a stack of blogs to go through, but I'll peruse those tomorrow. We are due a change in the weather overnight; rain in the small hours, although the sun should put in an appearance come morning. Nice colours when the sun set this evening; usually does not augur well.

Lewis in pictures

Today is the 4th anniversary of me taking photos in the isle of Lewis. It's not something you'd ordinarily remember, but as you all know, my photography hobby has gotten badly out of hand. And I'm not apologising for that. The shutter has clicked the grand total of about 21,000 times, leaving me with about 18,500 pictures of Lewis and Harris (including a few hundred of places on the mainland and elsewhere in Scotland). My first pictures took me to the highest point I have reached in Harris, Tealasbhal, 690 metres above sealevel.

Don't get me wrong, I've been taking pictures for nearly 30 years. The advent of a digital camera just unleashed the beast.

Blogger Community Photo Challenge - The Great Outdoors

Blogger Community Photo Challenge

You can't get much more outdoors than the summit of Mullach an Langa in the Harris hills, 2,011 feet above sealevel. The body of water is called Loch Langabhat, Norse for Long Water.

Guest Editor's post

Les Ellingham, who manages blogs for the Island Blogging community over on Wordpress, wrote this excellent post on his blog View from the Helm. He was happy for me to copy it on Atlantic Lines, and I'm putting it up as a Guest Editor's post.

You still have us

Blogging is a two-way business. By committing our words to a blog we open ourselves up for others to agree or disagree as they see fit. Comments are an important part of a blog for without them our thoughts may just as well be written on paper and filed in a drawer. What do you do though when comments turn nasty? Do you give up or do you just shrug and move on? I guess it depends on how sensitive you are or how vulnerable you feel.

One of the blogs I follow is by David duChemin, an American photographer and about a year ago he wrote a post on why you should or shouldn’t blog. One of the reasons he gave not to blog related to adverse comments where he said

You can’t handle the trolls. If you can’t handle the odd jerk showing up uninvited, then blogging may be less appealing to you. Once in a while someone logs on and starts a fight. It’s a little like someone arriving at your home, walking in, and lighting the sofa on fire. You can either ban them, delete them, put up with it, or stop blogging. I don’t think this is a good reason not to blog - but it’s a reality. Fortunately photographers tend to be a civil lot and if you fill your blog with big words, the jerks tend to stay away.

One of the keys to dealing with the morons is that mention of ‘big words’. Someone wrote to me recently and said that The Croft had the best way of dealing with bad comments and that was to simply publish them and then destroy them with a superior intellect. That really is the answer but not everyone has that ability. We do all, however, have the ability to publish comments and let our friends draw their own conclusions. It does require a certain amount of courage but you should know that your enemies will never prosper in the company of your friends. In the bad times simply turn to your friends, even those you have never met. Above all, don’t give up.

Don’t Give Up

David duChemin’s posts on blogging, although aimed at photographers are well worth reading

You Definitely Should(n’t) Blog

The Photographer and the Blog, Part 3

Yesterday's pictures

View from Ardroil Cemetery

Replica Lewis Chessman near Ardroil

Farmhouse at Ardroil

House near Baile na Cille, Timsgarry

Church at Timsgarry; not in use, subject of a dispute between the Church of Scotland and the local community. Community want to buy it off church, but church wants to make more money off it. Building is now structurally unsafe.

Say after me...

Sunday 19 April

Brilliantly sunny day with the mercury already at 13C. It'll probably creep a few degrees higher before the day is out. Whilst sitting on the bus from Uig last night, I was listening to BBC Radio 2, spelling out all the traffic jams in southeastern England. Hardly met a car on the A859, the spinal road from Tarbert to Stornoway.

A head-on collision on the M1 motorway near Luton has claimed the lives of 5 people in two cars. One of the vehicles was travelling in the wrong direction, the reason for which is unclear. The wreckage was barely recognisable as having been cars. In Holland and Germany, people who drive up motorways in the wrong direction are referred to as ghost-drivers, and are regarded as a major emergency. Radio programmes are interrupted to announce their presence. The M1 crash happened in the early hours of this morning. My thoughts are with those that died, and their relatives, some of whom are yet to be informed.

The files on the Hillsborough Disaster, in which 96 people died in 1989, are to be published 10 years early. A new inquiry into the tragedy at Sheffield could well be launched on the strength of the evidence contained in said files.

With thanks to Sugar for tag, will place in sidebar later