Victoria Pier, Lerwick. Photo: Alexa Fitzgibbon.
At this time of year, when the days are getting shorter, and I undergo the daily ritual of opening all the blinds and shutters, only to close them again hours later, it makes me think about the place I call home and the town I call home: Lerwick.
Johnson family. Photo courtesy of Larry & Beth Sutherland.
I remember my great-grandmother – Grandmam – well, she was a petite woman who was quiet and kind. She possessed a power so great; a strength of character that carried her family through life with an incredible unity. She was a quietly determined woman with a kind and gentle heart. I remember her at home, occupying a chair in the corner, surrounded by her makkin. Her seat of power and command, to me, it was her throne, and she was the Queen. She was the head of the family but was neither demanding nor harsh, her soft eyes, infectious smile and intuitive ways invited respect, it didn’t demand it.
Dolphin made from beach-found plastics at Hillswick Wildlife Sanctuary.
We are in a climate crisis, and it seems that everywhere we look, we are reminded of this grim reality. It can feel overwhelming, but there are things we can all do on a small, local level to abate this. This morning, before breakfast, I consumed two climate change articles and signed a petition calling for our council to declare a ‘climate crisis’.
Shetland is often at the raw end of climate change, and this is something that I’ve wanted to touch on for a while but have never felt equipped to do so. Where do you start? Where does it end? Which facts can I pick out as truths, and which ones are just scaremongering and political propaganda? These are all questions that have haunted my thoughts when I start to consider writing about this topic. It’s a huge subject. It’s greater than you or I, and it’s snowballing, faster and faster towards … towards what? Another question I can’t answer.
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