Although away from the island, I do keep an eye on what goes on there. Two things jumped out at me in recent weeks.
First, a visitor centre related to the Iolaire Disaster is to be built in Stornoway. I have frequently highlighted this tragedy over the years I've been in the island. Next New Year, 2019, it will be exactly a century ago the sinking of the HMY Iolaire off Holm Point. The 205 souls lost are currently commemorated in graveyards across Lewis, as well as in the memorial on Holm Point. It is good that more prominence is being give to this key event in the island's history. I completely understand why people were previously reluctant to discuss this; grief is a private matter. However, with the passage of time, it is perhaps appropriate to share it with the world, thereby lessening its poignancy. I hope so.
Secondly, the arts centre An Lanntair opened last Sunday, 28th January, to screen a film. This gave rise to vocal protests by Sabbaterians, who feel that this is a violation of the Sabbath. I can never help but note that pubs are also open on a Sunday in Stornoway.
Tuesday, 30 January 2018
I left Stornoway on November 16th, 2017 for family reasons. There are also personal reasons for this protracted absence from the island, and from this blog. Currently in Holland, I would normally refer to the Shell Gallery blog as per previous years, but I am not blogging there either. Facebook is my primary medium at present. My heart remains in the Hebrides, even if I'm not there.