During the day of Up Helly Aa there is a break in the festivities between the morning procession and the torch procession after dark. The Jarl Squad is making its way through the town, stopping in to several local schools and official buildings as part of their duties of the day. While they’re about that business the rest of us have the day to ourselves to do as we like.
My Girl and I met Jean at the Shetland Museum where she was chatting up their resident archivist for good local lore for her cookbook. While she did that, my Girl and I wandered through the exhibits and fully enjoyed the museum which turned out to be fairly small but very well presented. Not only have they put together a beautiful walk-through display on two floors telling the story of the Shetland people through the ages (the islands have been occupied for five thousand years), but their staff are absolutely wonderful, helpful and full of excellent information. They also have free wi-fi, which was very nice for my internet addicted self since my mobile phone had almost no reception on the entire island.
When we finished, we met up in the cafe for a hearty and inexpensive lunch, and happened to run in to our house-mate, Gilbert, who joined us for the rest of the day.
As it turned out, our timing was excellent. Just after our late lunch was finished, we walked downstairs and into a massive crowd of people waiting in the lobby. The Jarl Squad was on their way in for one of their official stops!
Look what we were treated to:
Sometimes we’re so lucky to be in the right place at the right time.
I’m so glad my Girl went on this trip with me. She not only got an experience of a lifetime, but she got to see that some truly great memories and wonderful people are just out there in the world, waiting for her to find them.