Room in the Wood Newsletter
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Newsletter 1/16

Leaving Halifax

We leave Halifax after 32 years on Friday 25 March 2016 and arrive at Mossfield House on Tuesday 29 March 2016. That’s not because it takes about four days to get from Halifax to Skye, but it is because we’re taking a short holiday in Sutherland on the way. Interestingly, we’ve been used to taking our Easter holiday on Skye for many years, so it's slightly strange to have alternative plans this year.
We’ll miss our Halifax friends (do keep in touch please), the local vernacular architecture and the splendid Calderdale scenery.

New breakfast menu?

In 1775 Samuel Johnson published an account of his recent visit, with James Boswell, to the Isle of Skye. Johnson includes an interesting section on food and drink and here’s a highlight….

‘A man of the Hebrides, for of the women’s diet I can give no account, as soon as he appears in the morning, swallows a glass of whisky; yet they are not a drunken race, at least I was never present at much intemperance; but no man is so abstemious as to refuse the morning dram, which they call a skalk’. *

……And there’s a new distillery planned for the nearby Isle of Raasay for 2017, to complement the existing Talisker Distillery on Skye! 

I’m looking forward to trying the (occasional) full Johnsonian when we settle down at Mossfield House. Porridge, bacon and egg, toast and marmalade, glass of whisky…..?

*From Johnson, S.(1775; 1984, p72)  Journey to the Western Isles, Penguin Classics, Harmondsworth England

Ben Tianavaig 
One of our first walks will be to the summit of nearby Ben Tianavaig, which is approached via our gate from the rear garden at Mossfield House. We’ve reached many summits on Skye, but not this one…yet. Actually there was an Easter a few years’ ago when we’d planned to conquer Ben Tianavaig, but we’d barely left the car before deciding the wind was far too strong to be able to enjoy the walk. Discretion being the better part of valour and all that.
Our pictures from the summit will feature in the gallery section of the website in due course.
Did you know?
A report from Scotland’s Census 2011 re Gaelic speaking (published in September 2015) informs:-
  • 25 – 49% of the population of Portree can speak Gaelic
  • 50+% of the population of Uig can speak Gaelic

Newsletter No 2
Our next edition will be issued at the end of April 2016 and will reflect on our first month at Mossfield House.

Best wishes

Ron & Jenny Hill
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