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Never any shade when you want it...

The motto of today is 'be careful what you wish for' - we've spent quite a while this year cursing the cold damp weather but today has been completely the opposite, a day of sweltering sunshine which soon had everyone melting and hoping for a cloud. Karla was happy though with this really big half of a pot lid from her little side cell in structure 5:

Pot lids are just what they sound like, pieces of stone carefully shaped into a round to sit on top of a pot, and they come in all sorts of sizes. If you've been following us for a while you may remember the stunning little pot complete with its tiny lid found by Jackie in our 2022 season.

Not to be outdone Ellen had a nice little stone with a notch in it, quite a bit smaller but still stylish.

It was just the thing to cheer Ellen up as she'd had a long commute across on the boat this morning, owing to a delay to the sailing caused by the difficulty of loading and unloading a lorry that was just about the same size as the boat:

The Orkney Ferries crew do an amazing job dealing with all sorts of vehicles, something this big involves a lot of manoeuvring of large heavy timbers under the wheels to get the clearance to get on and off, which inevitably takes some extra time.

Alan meanwhile was drawing a section across the hearth - one of the big advantages of having a professional illustrator on site is that he does all the drawing way better than any of the rest of us could and a lot quicker too. It was so hot he had to swap his tweed cap (bought to replace one that blew off his head on yet another ferry and ended up in the Minch) with his headscarf, doing his best Lawrence of Arabia impression:

Here's Karla's little side cell cleaned up for its photo but what the photo doesn't show is the lengths we had to go to in order to get some shade for the pic, as nasty shadows all over do tend to ruin a site photo.

Luckily we have a lot of tarpaulins on site - more usually used this year to protect delicate surfaces from the rain, but can be pressed into service as sunshades with enough people to hold them up

Looks a bit odd but it was the only way to do it today without a cloud in the sky, at least it wasn't too windy:

It looks like back to normal tomorrow, dull and cooler so that will keep the photographers happy, see you then!


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