Constantia diary: Westray, Orkney


Apart from anchorwatches and cooking, there are few duties as long as we’re in harbour. Free hours are often spent reading or playing cards, and some of the trainees organize a chess tournament. Having joined a project group back in Sweden, I brought with me one particular book, Catching the Light by American physicist Arthur Zajonc; a history of the evolving perceptions of light by religion, art and science… Or, as  it’s put in the subtitle: “the Entwined History of Light and Mind”. I have undertaken to translate one or more of its chapters, so right now, I follow Einstein in his Gedanken-Experimente, running with light… Occasionally, I turn to the chessplayers asking for their opinions on linguistic matters, and get some good advice.
Within a day or two, the wind and sea calms down, and finally we take leave of Stornoway – now heading for Lerwick. On the way, we make a short stopover at Orkney. This is where three of Constantia’s trainees come from, and one of them is now leaving our ship to return home. On Westray, we make land at an empty pier by a desolate ferry station, and soon Kieran’s father and brother come to pick him up. Kieran climbs down from t/s Constantia to the sturdy, fast motorboat of his father’s; one sea, two worlds. The two captains exchange some appreciative words, and we part again. Our next leg is for Lerwick, Shetland.

110721 Stornoway to Westray; watercolour on paper, 15 x 15 cms

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