Tuesday, 20 January 2015

Same here , same there

Before we moved to Shetland we were asked, have you experienced a winter in Shetland?
Well at that time no, but now we are 1/2 way through our first winter.

People always say there is only two weathers in Shetland, Wet and very wet. Well  I would like to add a few others.

Windy and wet, very windy and wet, Gale force wind and wet, Hurricane force winds and wet but in between it can be still and dry, `a day between the weather' that's the time to be out and about.
                                                                                          Spiggie fishing Hut

Perhaps Sheffield may not get the extremes of the windy weather but other conditions can be worse.
The other year 28 inch of snow fell and we were unable to get the car out for a week, even though we lived on a bus route. In 2014 Shetland experienced far better, sunny drier weather than Sheffield but it had to turn sooner than later.

You have to embrace the conditions if you can, the windy weather can provide great photo opportunities while the snow transforms the landscape. The wet conditions have created many small lochs and it seems an age ago the some of the smaller Shetland lochs  completely dried up.

Lightening has struck several pylons in the south mainland causing a number of power cuts some  for eight hours or more. We experience a couple of power cuts but in the middle of the night so it did affect us as much. We are lucky that we have a gas cooker so not totally reliant on electic , but don't have any alternative to heat our home, having air - air heating.

A few buildings got direct hits by lightening which caused fires while the gales blew a bus and transport wagon over. Many Ferries failed to sail and even the buses were cancelled along with school closures

                                                                                       Spiggie North side

The great thing about Shetland weather is that the wide views provide a chance to see some fascinating cloud formations, in Sheffield we felt hemmed in by the buildings and only saw part of sky

                                                                                            Breiwick , Lerwick today

Today our hot water packed in so we phoned our plumber and he told us that he would be along tomorrow. That would never have happened in Sheffield.it would usually be a week if they turned up at all.

Also the weather conditions yesterday provided an opportunity to put our new window in, its great to see out over Sandwick, besides that it lets a lot more light in the living room. We have waited for the replacement window since the original one was broken on the 17 August.

Today the main road was closed for several hours to recover a lorry and excavator which went over the side of the road at Levenwick

Saturday, 10 January 2015


Since Christmas we have only been out a few times, mainly due to the bad weather. But we were looking forward to the Shetland Up Helly Aa fire festivals, the first of which was in Scalloway last night. The weather was excellent considering that a major storm was about to hit Shetland with winds around 100 mph predicted. It turned out that it got up to 101 mph on the mainland

We arrived early in Scalloway ready for the 7 pm start. Parking up near the boat club we would be in a good position to see the Galley set alight.

The time came for the start and a large bag signalling the light up. around 85 torch bearers start to proceed towards us singing away and after around 10 mins arrived to greet a large crowd.

The Galley was set alight and sent into the sea to burn away, it was great to see the event without getting wet or too cold.

Just as we got back in the car it started to rain and later that night the gales hit, the worst wind since we moved to Shetland. It didn't stop us sleeping and only our cat woke us the next morning. During the night Shetland suffered with a number of short power cuts from 5 am
The wind was still blowing but only around force 7. Later in the afternoon it started to snow with the wind picking up again.

We had some good news earlier in the week when our joiner phoned to say he had received the window frame and glass, all we need now is some decent weather to get it in without getting our furniture wet. Mind you with the windows caked in salt we wouldn't have seen much.

I was constantly using the washer on the car when I went out to take some rough sea photos later in the morning. Even after afternoon rain the windows in the house are still covered in salt, not a time to be going out to clean them either.
                                                                  Diane enjoying the Up Helly Aa in Scalloway