I met Viv when I called in to the visitor centre in Berneray, just 5 minutes before closing time. It’s a tiny house, formerly where the island nurse lived, and now has information about the social and natural history of the area. We hurriedly discovered common interests in botany and basket making, then it was time to close. A few days later we met again, this time on an archaeology walk. She introduced me to her husband, who looked familiar somehow, but as we were all wrapped up to the eyes in hats and waterproofs it was hard to tell. It turns out to be Stuart, who I used to work with in Bristol, way back in the 1980s.
There is a Gaelic expression that means ‘what a small world’, but I have forgotten it. Invited back for tea after the (extremely wet) walk, (looking mainly at bumps in the landscape and using lots of imagination), I meet some other friends of theirs who are passing through on a cycling holiday. And one thing leads to another and we all end up taking part in an impromptu string making workshop! Heaven! A whole roomful of people who want to make string!!! Thankyou Viv, Stuart, Rosanna, Kate, Julian
What is the collective noun for a bunch of stringmakers I wonder, a knot? a strand? a tangle?