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Deb Robson and Tussah

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« More millimeters of progress | Main | Some reading, some knitting, some both »

August 10, 2007


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We talk about St. Kilda's nearly every year--there's a biology research project done there, and they look for people willing to live out there! Sounds rough to me, if interesting... I have spun a Hebridean fleece and have the yarn waiting for me to figure out what to do with it! Congrats to you and Donna about the award, and as usual, I wish you all good things with the new book. :)

Deborah Robson

It's interesting to discover which (rare) people know and talk about Saint Kilda--! Yes, it would be an exceptional place for biology research. Also Shetland. I have a lovely book called A Naturalist's Shetland. People used to live on Saint Kilda (4000 years of traces); final community members evacuated in 1930. It's now National Trust of Scotland, with a rocket tracking station (and army detachment, thus electricity and the like). It's 50 miles from the Outer Hebrides, and a few people have windsurfed and canoed to get there. It's 8 hours by boat from the Outer Isles, or 22 to 48 hours, depending on route and weather, from Oban. This all according to my Colin Baxter Island Guide to Saint Kilda. I like to canoe, but I like river canoeing. When paddling, I like to see the shore, preferably on both sides. Same source: "It is unusual to reach St Kilda after a completely smooth crossing; practically unique to accomplish both outward and return journeys without hitting a rough spell." I think I'll practice with shorter jaunts to somewhere!


Yes, after reading about the relatively primitive accommodations on-island, the trip to get there, the isolation and the kind of research one is collecting, I get a little less enthusiastic about St. Kilda's each year. The biologist husband is still game enough to keep forwarding me the advertisement, and we still talk about it. It sounds fabulously wild, beautiful, and a little scary!

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