I noted today that I had completed 455 separate Tea Towel Blogs since I began this ‘journey’ two and a half years ago. That doesn’t include any Pages or anything to do with http://www.virtualteatowelmuseum.com. Back on 28 December 2016, I set myself some New Years Resolutions, some targets to keep me going. They were to complete 400 Tea Towel Blogs concerning at least 550 tea towels by 31 December 2017. With 455 Tea Towel Blogs about 577 tea towels, I have well exceeded my targets and I still have two months to go. So today, I have re-set those targets: to complete 500 separate Tea Towel Blogs concerning at least 625 tea towels by the end of the year. It is actually pushing me to the limits because it means 45 Blogs in 62 days, that will mean speeding things up.
When I reorganised my tea towels, moving them from the airing cupboard to the built-in wardrobe, they got slightly muddled so I recorded all the tea towels that hadn’t been blogged about; I can look at the nine-paged list and see what exactly needs to be done and there still looks like an awful lot to do. To help me in the latest target, I have identified the next 75 tea towels to be blogged about so I don’t have to be faffing about, pondering what to do.
No point in bleth’rin (courtesy of Robert Burns); let’s get started on 456. I have just come back from a week in Aberdeen, staying in the Girdleness Lighthouse Cottages. I had been there in February and loved it. This time I was there with Hamish, Liz’s grandson. It was half-term and he wanted to see where his great grandad was born, and grew up; Hamish wanted to see the beach he played on, the church he went to, the roads he walked down and also wanted to see his great great aunt because he was only 3 the last time they met. Hamish is a Lego Man, likes things technical, so absolutely loved the idea of the Lighthouse. Every morning he went out with his grandma, to walk around the Lighthouse, down to the beach, over the golf course, taking photos of the emerging sunrise. In the evening, they took photos of the most glorious sunsets. A Lighthouse is one of the best places to do this, away from the neon lights of the city centre, overlooking the wide expanse of sea.
Hamish is aware of my love of tea towels, after all he created ‘Hamish’s Chicken’ (Blog dated 2 September 2016). On the way up to Aberdeen in the car he said “I think that we have too many tea towels at home. Mummy thinks so too, so you could have some of ours”. I was touched by this generous offer, even though Mummy wasn’t aware of it. I also think he might be in for a shock because ‘Mummy’ will be inheriting the whole collection at some later date, then he will find out what ‘too many tea towels’ are! For Hamish, in fact for all three of us, the Lighthouse Cottage was a unique and exciting place: thick walls, deep window sills, wooden floors, cast iron bath and a Belfast sink. The kitchen was beautiful, completely fitted out with wooden cupboards and matching door. On the door to the kitchen, neatly pinned, is a tea towel, this tea towel, the Northern Lights. It is so appropriate because it shows every single Lighthouse that is around the Scottish coast, many of which I have seen. This is a tea towel with information, always useful in a Pub Quiz. Earlier this year I saw the Lighthouse on Bass Rock and on the Isle of May; in 1972 I saw Muckle Flugga; in 2013 I saw the Lismore Lighthouse…….. They all bring back such memories. Hamish went into the kitchen and shouted “Barbara, come and look at this. There is an awesome tea towel. You’ll love it”.
I told Hamish the story of the last time I was at the Lighthouse, how I fell in love with the tea towel, how it had been made for the Scottish Lighthouse Museum, how in the middle of February we set off to Fraserburgh to go to the Museum to buy the tea towel and they no longer stocked them. This had resulted in me (a) going mardy and (b) writing a Tea Towel Blog called ‘Address to the Haggis’ (dated 12 February 2017). Hamish wondered if they would mind me taking this tea towel home (and don’t think that hadn’t occurred to me many times during that week in February) but I needed to set a good example so just took the photo and said I would write about it instead.
The fact is, Hamish is right, it is ‘awesome’ and I would really like a tea towel just like that but it isn’t to be. What I do have is (a) the photo (b) memories, great memories of that week with Hamish exploring his ‘roots’ (c) fantastic photographs of Girdleness Lighthouse and its setting (d) the opportunity to go back again to the Lighthouse for another holiday (e) memories of the stories I read in the books about Lighthouses, in the cottage and (f) memories of those spectacular sunrises, sunsets and rainbows last week. Perhaps, on this one occasion, I can do without the tea towel and just live with the memories.