Saturday 4 May 2013

We 'May' Not See You On Monday...

We shall be closed on Monday for our May Day holiday, apologies for any inconvenience this may cause.

The current plan is to pinch the book trolleys and ride them down the dunes of Dingieshowe beach on route to swimming in our pants but we may just sit at the back of a bus throwing sweets, we haven't quite decided. We're definitely all dressing up as Pop and Ma Larkin though.

Posts from other years have already explained Orkney beliefs and customs for this time of year so we shall just leave you with Ernest Walker Marwick's thoughts on May taken from his Island Calendar show for BBC Radio:

'I've always thought that one of the loveliest lines in English poetry is, "Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May." They are a comment on life itself. If you were to talk of May in human terms you might say that it is the adolescent month.

We have no sooner had a couple of halcyon days, blue as sapphire, than there comes a bleak wind which cuts us to the bone, and which makes the kye in the fields look so miserable that we speak of the koo-kwacks o'Mey. In other places this is the gab of May.

And yet in May we feel that the time has come when we must really forget the winter and get on with the work of the spring...'

He goes on to say that, to people of his age (EWM was born in 1915), May was when children's winter boots were taken away 'no matter how cold the weather' and they went bare-foot until harvest was over.

Excuse us won't you? We must go and kiss and hug our shoes and socks with tearful gratitude...

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