The longest day


It is a beautiful time of year, and here in the West of Scotland we have been enjoying some incredible weather. Most days you will find me here . . .


. . . knitting away on my current YOKE, looking at this . . .


. . . and occasionally these . . .


What a joy to have a garden!


The midsummer evenings are truly extraordinary. Around 9.30 the world turns to gold.


Every day I am bowled over by the beauty of my surroundings. I like how connected I feel to the outdoors, the surrounding landscape, its sense of space, the changing light, my lovely neighbours. So on the one hand, these days around the longest day have been delightful. But on the other, they have been kind of hideous. Tom, who has suffered from recurrent bouts of appendicitis had an attack last week in Dublin and finally had the offending organ removed in St Vincent’s hospital on Thursday morning. Thank goodness for the prompt and careful action of those surgeons, because it turns out the thing was dangerously gangrenous. Thankfully he is now doing well on some serious antibiotics, but it has nonetheless been a horribly worrying few days during which I have felt rather useless, there being little I could do. I am so incredibly grateful to Una and Roger, with whom Tom has been staying in Dublin, whose support has really been above and beyond. We are hoping to get Tom home by the end of next week and I can’t tell you how much I am looking forward to seeing him after the grim worries of the past few days. Hopefully he can then spend some time recovering and relaxing in our garden. Its a shame he can’t knit. . . Well, please keep Tom in your thoughts, everyone, and I hope you are enjoying a lovely Midsummer weekend!

87 thoughts on “The longest day

  1. Oh dear Kate! Please give Tom our best wishes for a speedy recovery and a swift return to you.. I’m sure his recovery will be sweet in such a lovely place as yours.

  2. Sending get well soon wishes to Tom from the other side of the world – relaxing in your beautiful garden will be just the ticket for you both…

  3. Praying that he is able to recover calmly. How great that he is able to return home. Thank you for sharing your beauty with us… blessings, mari

  4. Oh dear, what a week. Speedy recovery to Tom and supportive best wishes to you and Bruce. Thank goodness Tom was in a very good place at a very bad moment. Take care.

  5. It is so hard to be away from loved ones when they are ill! Best wishes Tom! And Kate, may your knitting keep your mind and hands occupied!

  6. Let’s hope this is the end of medical issues for you two. Your new setting is so beautiful and ought to be the perfect place for total recovery. Thank you for sharing the ups and downs of your lives with us.

  7. Heal, Tom! (Think of that as coming from Bruce…:) getting his own back). May you have a good and complete recovery. Kate and Bruce miss you.

  8. Thinking of both of you. Having had an emergency appendectomy, I can understand both the horror of the moment and the relief of evicting “the offending organ.” May Tom have many long, leisurely hours in the garden as he recovers.

  9. Oh I can imagine you have been out of your mind, worrying! Sending many healing thoughts to Tom and hoping he will have a quick recovery and an easy time of it traveling home very soon!

  10. Blessings and light, speedy recovery Tom. You are all in my thoughts. Your garden is a balm to any troubled soul Kate, what a beautiful healing spot you have moved to!

  11. I remember seeing that late, golden light in Scotland and in Ireland–looking forward to coming back one day. I hope your Tom bounces back quickly–why do we need appendixes anyway? They just cause trouble . . .

  12. I hope Tom recovers quickly! All the best to both of you. Your pictures are just lovely…they make me long (again) to have my own yard again and a garden. Hopefully someday…for now I’m trying to be positive about not really being able to enjoy long summer evenings. With a baby, our nights end early these days, but I suppose there is a time for everything, and at least he lets me knit.

  13. What an awfull week for you Kate – to be apart at such a time is especially hard. So glad all is well and your Tom will soon be home. Thinking of you as I knit – B. /: ).

  14. Tom, I hope you will recover quickly and uneventfully! I’m sure once you get home you will feel A LOT better, especially having Kate and Bruce there with you.

  15. Oh I so enjoy your posts…..even if I don’t often comment. This time, as always, there’s so much to spend time enjoying! My heart belongs to Scotland….my birthplace! Best wishes to atom. Hope you have him home soon but no sooner than his healing needs! What a worrying time for you, too. It’s often harder being the one standing alongside! Hugs. Joan

  16. Gentle healing thoughts and wishes for Tom. You will be able to lavish much attention on him when he comes home.
    The countryside where you live is so beautiful. Thanks so much for sharing the lovely photos.

  17. Oh no poor Tom! My mother had an emergency appendectomy many years ago, when I was far away (in Shetland). It’s a scary thing and I hope he is feeling soon better. Coming home will help with all that marvellous landscape to look at.

  18. Oh no…poor Tom and how difficult for you being apart from him at such a time. Sending heartfelt healing thoughts to Tom for a quick recovery, and hoping he is back with you soon. If anything can speed his convalescence, it is time in that peaceful and beautiful garden with you and Bruce.

  19. Will definitely keep Tom in my thoughts! We all need friends who can jump in at times because, truly, none of us can do it alone.

    Very glad you have landed n such a wonderful place.

    Heading north later this week and I LOVE the extended light that goes on until 10 pm or so.

  20. All, the best for Tom’s recovery. My husband’s brother from New Zealand used to do a lot of international travel and took up knitting during the long flights. So, there’s always hope for Tom to learn. :)

  21. Nasty appendix! How dare they cause pain and worry!

    I hope Tom has a safe journey home to you and Bruce. The perfect spot for full recuperation.

    Happy mid summer solstice. Xxx

  22. My favourite time of day too, although the magic “golden” hour here on the north shore of Lake Ontario is a little earlier. I really missed the long twilight of midsummer when we lived farther south in the mid-Atlantic. Best wishes for a quick recovery to Tom. Thank goodness for modern medicine!

  23. OMG, so glad that Tom is doing well and you have such supportive friends.

    I envy your beautiful surroundings.


  24. Indeed best get-well vibes on the way for Tom. I will be thinking positive thoughts for a speedy recovery and that you and Tom and Bruce will be happy and healthy together.

  25. I have just moved, ten days ago, from the Finistère in France to Dorset, and this beaven-sent weather has been such a help, I too marvel at my surroundings. How lucky that Tom’s appendix was “caught” before it poisoned his whole insides. Speedy recovery, best time of year for convalescing.

  26. Wishing Tom a speedy recovery. I am sure that your lovely garden and the amazing scenery will have magical healing properties.

  27. Hoping for peace of mind for you, dear Kate and a speedy recovery for your Tom. He’ll be back running again before you know it. Friends can be such an amazing support in time of need. Bless yours who gave loving care to your love. Praying for you today.

  28. My prayers and healing thoughts to Tom, and love and hope to you – one knitter to another, one human no longer a stranger through knitting, to another. Bless.

  29. Maybe Tom will learn to knit when he comes home! He would have such a wonderful teacher – Kate! Wishing him a fast recovery from his operation. Glad you are able to enjoy the wonders around you in your new place, also.

  30. Prayers for healing for Tom and prayers for healing from worry for you! Many long summer days ahead when you reunite.

  31. Please pass on my best wishes to Tom and to yourself as well. I know how you feel as in 2006, my partner was hospitalised with Ferniers Gangrene of the Scrotum and we spent a few anxious days as I was told e could die. Luckily he survived and after several months of recovery even managed to get back to normal. So I know exactly how you have been feeling.

  32. Thank goodness he is alright. So dangerous and yet he is on the road to recovery. You must have been beside yourself in Scotland while he was in Dunlin during this time. Glad all is well.

  33. OH my sympathies!!! I too had to have an emergency appendectomy 6 years ago when I was 66 and as I was wheeled into the OR the surgeons joked, well, you’re not the usual age of our pts with an appendicitis…..hahaha But recovery was quite quick and I was back to work in a week. I wish him and you well.
    As to that light? Oh yes I remember hitchhiking around northern Ireland at this time of year and it is fabulous. Tom will enjoy his recovery looking at this scene and YOU!!!
    And to think your garden is so close…no going to the allotment. Sweet.

  34. Sending lot’s of positive thoughts and wishing Tom a speedy recovery! I’ll keep my fingers crossed that he will be able to get back home soon!

  35. Sorry to hear about Tom. I hope he has a speedy recovery. He can take up some knitting never yo late to learn?

    My best to both of you!!!

  36. I’m so sorry to hear about Tom! My partner had a “ruptured and gangrenous” appendicitis a few years ago, and it was scary! The silver lining is that since he is so fit he will probably heal quickly. I hope that the garden and golden light are some comfort to you while waiting for Tom to come home.

  37. Hoping Tom makes a full and speedy recovery and he is soon able to enjoy your beautiful surroundings. Thinking of you both.

  38. Oh my but you have had a time of it, the both of you. I send you and Tom my best wishes for recovery. May the coming days be slow, healing, gentle, gentle, and serene for you.

  39. Sending Tom best wishes for a quick recovery. So glad that it was caught in time and that he’s on the mend. The beauty of your surroundings is astonishing. Thanks so much for sharing the photos with us.

  40. Blessings to Tom & you both. Praying for a complete & speedy recovery. I hope you are comforted somewhat in the beauty & grandeur of the landscape around you- I know I would be, a little.

  41. Best wishes Kate for your Tom’s speedy recovery and hopefully he will be back to all his usual activities in no time but in the meantime it would be lovely for you both to be able to enjoy your beautiful surroundings too. In our corner of the world ~ Tasmania ~ we have just had our shortest day and loving this season here too … AJ

  42. Get well soon, Tom. The good is that he won’t get appendicitis again. Hope you both get some relaxed recovery time in a beautiful midsummer. Thanks for sharing those wonderful photos. The flowers are so beautiful.

  43. Not knowing any of you but following your lives for a few years now through your excellent blog, I wish Tom a speedy recovery. No doubt the beautiful landscape and Bruce liveliness will help.

  44. Poor Tom! You must have been frantic, not being able to get there. At least he will never have to suffer another bout of appendicitis. I hope he has a speedy recovery.

    Beautiful pictures. I, too, love that golden light, which is so rare down South. I love the way it changes the greens in the leaves and grass, too – they become much more lime.

  45. Thanks for your uplifting messages Kate and your beautiful photos. You do indeed live in a gorgeous corner of beautiful Scotland. Best wishes to you and Tom and a healing recovery for him. I can sense in your message how much you want him home.

  46. I have appreciated your summer photographs of plants wild and cultivated. Looks as though you are in a place where healing and knitting might happen easily. Best wishes for lots of both of those.

  47. Your blog is beautiful and we share a passion for knitting. But seeing these photos, just brings be back to my honeymoon, Mr Walker and I spent in Scotland..25 years ago. We will come back! But for now I so enjoyed this.
    I will send good vibes over the Big Pond from Ohio for a speedy recovery for your Tom.
    Thank you for sharing, Johanna.

  48. Best get well wishes for Tom. Oh.. your beautiful surroundings and your beautiful garden. Life is always better and more joyful with all that green around. I am glad Bruce is there, keeping you good company.

  49. As an appendix-less girl myself, I feel Tom’s pain. On the plus side, once it’s gone, you never have to worry if an upset tummy is appendicitis again!

  50. Oh dear, how frightening! I am relieved to hear that your Tom is recovering well.Thank goodness for antibiotics! Wishing the two of you much love and healing time spent together in your garden, soaking up the glorious view and golden light.

  51. Kate:
    Tom is in my thoughts & prayers for a full & speedy recovery. Thank you for letting your readers know. All my best to you & Bruce.

  52. A very happy birthday to you, Kate! I hope this next year brings you continued good health and much happiness. Continued thoughts of healing are extended to Tom!

  53. My thoughts and prayers for Tom’s recovery, and hoping you have him home very soon. We had an anxious time a few years ago when my son (also a Tom) had to have his appendix out in his second year away at university; his recovery was slow at first but fine in the end.

  54. ‘The run-honey evening light’ …. one of the many things I miss about Scoland.
    Best wishes to Tom for a speedy recovery so that he can be home with you to convalesce. My heart goes out to you both having to go through such an anxiety-ridden time while apart. Hopefully you will both be able to enjoy the peace ane quiet of your lovely garden and surrounding countryside very soon.

  55. Praying for a speedy recovery for Tom, and that he can make his way home soon. I’m glad you have Bruce to keep you company during such a nerve-wracking time!
    I can’t imagine living surrounded by such beauty. You certainly are blessed.

  56. I hope a much recovered Tom will be back with you soon. The pictures of your garden and surrounds are lovely.

  57. sending healing thoughts for Tom and for you.

    hope that he is soon back home and able to enjoy some of those golden evenings (midges permitting) with you and Bruce.

  58. My very best wishes to Tom for his recovery. You must have been so scared and frustrated at not being there.
    Apart from that, it is a beautiful midsummer.

  59. So sorry to hear Tom was ill, but incredibly glad the docs caught it, if only in the nick of time! Wow….

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About Kate Davies

writer, designer and creator of Buachaille (100% Scottish wool)