Seeing Things……Seeing A Different Kind Of Ting…. Ode To A ‘Stanley’ Flask…

by Bernie Bell - 08:51 on 10 October 2022

Seeing Things…

I saw this….


Then I read this…..

Seeing Things

Inishbofin on a Sunday morning.

Sunlight, turfsmoke, seagulls, boatslip, diesel.

One by one we were being handed down

Into a boat that dipped and shilly-shallied

Scaresomely ever time.  We sat tight

On short cross-benches, in nervous twos and threes,

Obedient, newly close, nobody speaking

Except the boatmen, as the  gunwales sank

And seemed they might ship water any minute.

The sea was very calm but even so,

When the engine kicked and our ferryman

Swayed for balance, reaching for the tiller,

I panicked at the shiftiness and heft

Of the craft itself.  What guaranteed us –

That quick response and buoyancy and swim –

Kept me in agony.  All the time

As we went sailing evenly across

The deep, still, seeable-down-into water,

It was as if I looked from another boat

Sailing through air, far up, and could see

How riskily we fared into the morning,

And loved in vain our bare, bowed, numbered heads.

By Seamus Heaney

Imagine how it feels….getting into those boats…..unfamiliar territory…..


Seeing A Different Kind Of Ting….

Andrew Appleby - President - is travelling to Reykjavik to attend the Arctic Assembly…  https://www.arcticcircle.org/  and promote the John Rae Society…. https://www.johnraesociety.com/  - this reminded me of when, years ago, Mike went to Iceland with his work. 

I have an amber necklace which he brought back for me.  It’s made of rough amber, not polished, and each chunk is a slightly different shade.  It’s one of my favourite things.  Mike had a wonder-full trip there, came back with many photos, and we were planning to maybe go there for a holiday. Then I got ill - I don’t travel well now so that isn’t going to happen.  But we have the photos, I’ve seen Iceland on the telly and have a good imagination, and Mike has the memories, including going to Thingvallir where there is a clear rift between two tectonic plates – imagine! Two  of the earth’s plates – just - there – with a big line down the middle!!!   I’ve always thought - imagine the energy in that place, where the Ting is  - between two tectonic plates.  My oh my. https://guidetoiceland.is/connect-with-locals/jorunnsg/ingvellir-national-park

I wonder if Andrew will go there, and….will he Feel the Force?

It’s said that this is the site of the first Parliament - the actual first Parliament – never mind the British one. The Icelandic Ting is the real Ting.

I tend to think – how do they know that?  Some group of people, somewhere, might have been holding democratic parliaments, way way back.  Maybe it’s the site of the first known Parliament.

I don’t suppose it matters where or when the first one was held, as long as democratic parliaments continue to be held.  Here’s hoping.

Here’s something about OrkneyTings…………..  https://theorkneynews.scot/2018/01/18/orkney-tings/

It was a work trip but on their time off the group were taken on the Golden Circle tour, and also to the Blue Lagoon to soak in the thermal waters. I labelled the photo in our album ‘Scientists go mad at the Blue Lagoon.’


Ode to a ‘Stanley’ flask


I gave my friend a ‘Stanley’ flask

To take out on his strolls

So he could have a cup of tea

To enjoy with his rolls.


Or he could have some soup in it

Chunky - full of veg

Sitting on a sunny bank

Right up against a hedge.


A ‘Stanley’ flask is A GOOD THING

Whether young or old

For carrying your beverages

To keep them hot…or cold.


BB October 2022


Something more of Seamus Heaney….. https://theorkneynews.scot/2020/05/08/time-to-re-assess/


PS.... I've just discovered that it's World Mental Health Day....here's something I wrote about where my mind goes sometimes...... https://theorkneynews.scot/2019/04/13/the-pit-the-wasteland/

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