We had the most unforgettable time in this Smithey's Bar for a local ceilidh. It was brilliant music and a hand clapping good time.
These high schoolers played the bad pipes and pipes. The owner (not pictured) had an amazing voice and talent.
So, what is a ceilidh? A ceilidh is a ceilidh. It doesn't translate well. The owner said it means a gathering. (He was the first person I met who could speak Gaedhlig!) Good enough. The verb "a' ceilidh," means visiting. Placed in the US, a ceilidh might be compared to a hootenany. A foot-stomping, folk songfest, in which everyone participates, fueled by uisge-beatha or just the local brew.
Of the many things I wanted to see and experience in Scotland, the standing stones in the Orkney islands were very near the top of the list. (Jury's still out on what was the top item.)
And they were amazing. This shows a Ring of Stones, thought to be a group of 60, originally, and surrounded by the usual ditch, which in this case, given the size of the site, was quite deep and wide. Kind of like a moat. It is unknown why these moats surrounded the stones. I have my theories. They speculated that the large number of stones represented a gathering of all the tribes of the surrounding lands.
We weren't permitted to enter the circle or touch these stones, though we had complete access at the smaller site.
Note the wildflowers: the heather was blooming while we were there AND there was blue sky. What luck!