Island at the Edge

Island at the Edge
The Gathering, Cable Bay, Colonsay

Sunday, 12 August 2012

166th Islay Jura & Colonsay Show 2012

Wow! What a fabulous, well organised and very, very enjoyable show!
It all started several weeks ago when I contacted Janey – Events manager extraordinaire on the Isle of Islay who organises the Annual Islay, Jura & Colonsay Show. And there I was, sitting in glorious sunshine at my prime pitch at the show. 
It has been several years since a Colonsay resident had a stance at the show albeit up until a couple of years ago, folk from Colonsay did take exhibits for entry into varying catagories. But I was ‘it’ this year.
What I will say is I was treated as a V.I.P from the moment of contacting Janey until my return to Colonsay.
My attendance was only made possible by flying with HebrideanAir Services to Islay. I arrived at Colonsay International Airport laden with all my wares for the show. There was a full plane, but we still managed to get ‘everything into the hold.
A nice young French chap was flying onward to Oban. He had been ‘wild camping’ on Colonsay. Kapitein and I were very impressed when we saw attached to his rucksack a wee bag containing his rubbish! If all wild campers were so attentive, this would be fantastic for our island, especially when we have found, latterly, an old frying pan and several other items – some unmentionable, after a group of campers departed a few weeks ago. So hats off to this young guy.
It was a perfect day for flying inter-island, hardly a breath of wind as Julie flew over the show field on our decent into Islay.
I was collected at the airport by Lamont – a lovely man. We waited a wee while longer to collect one of the show judges who flew in from Glasgow with Flybe. Then off to the show-field.
Lamont dropped me off and I headed for my pitch. I was just down from the Secretaries tent. Janey had two large tables laid out for me – perfect.

I did hope to have a good mooch around the show, but wow!! I was so busy!
I met a wonderful array of people and the show was just superb. I was opposite one of the main show rings so managed to glimpse all things ‘horsey’ including trick riding – outstanding work with horses, and one of the participants had only been in training for 3 weeks! I had all things ‘sheep’ behind me and was very interested to see the quality and calibre of the ‘sheep’ entrants. There were dog classes, vegetable classes, dancing competitions and to top it all off I heard the Islay Pipe Band – truly fantastic.

Here is the Islay Blog with more details and some super photographs.

There was great interest in the Colonsay Gansey - thank you for the commission and especially my knitting courses (I hope to see you very soon!) I had produced some of the new design purses made with Braveheart Tartan from the Islay Woolen Mill, these were very well received too.

Like a breath of fresh air, my matey Christine thankfully came to help me later in the afternoon where we sold even more! She and Tom very kindly helped me to pack up and head to the main gates to meet Lamont at 3.00pm.
Oh dear!! At 3.15, still no Lamont!! With the plane taking off at 3.45pm, I headed to find Janey and to my astonishment she managed to organise another lift to take me to the airport. My most humble thanks go to Julie from Bowmore Distillery who was exceptionally kind and took me back to the airport.
I arrived just as Julie was making her decent onto the runway. As I loaded my now much fewer wares onto the plane, Lamont appeared, bless him, he had a puncture and had collected another car!  He was so worried about me!
So, the upshot was, I will never forget absolutely everyone who made my wonderful trip to the Islay, Jura & Colonsay show possible. I was made to feel so welcome and treated with the most kindness I have seen in ages. Thank you to everyone. And here’s to next year!!! Cheers...
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