The service was at twelve the next morning and I was looking forward to it, never really having been to a service other than a standard Church of England one. The kirk at Tingwall was similar in layout to the one at Lunna.
It's difficult for me coming from England where all the churches have a very fixed orientation and share the same basic layout. Here you enter through a door at the east end, then the main focus of the service is on the pulpit which is situated in the middle of the long south wall at the side. Very odd, but other than that the service was quite similar and with a good and heartfelt sermon, and most welcoming congregation.
It was well worth going, I had wanted to go to a service at the Kirk on Bressay the first Sunday I was in Shetland, but the service was late in the afternoon, and I needed to move on so I could visit the museum in Lerwick on a Sunday when the parking was easier.
After the service one or two of the folk had a quick peep inside Thebus, but one lady was far too frightened of dogs of any sort to get anywhere near, even though I assured her that Phoebe was really gentle, but from a safe distance she very kindly invited me back to share a bowl of soup with her and her husband, who turned out to have been a pilot for the huge Sullom Voe vessels, which was the task which Marina's husband Terry, is now in charge of.
We had a lovely chat and a far more substantial meal than just a bowl of soup. Such a lovely welcoming nation, and perhaps they will truly be a nation after the Scottish Independence vote - I have heard more than once that Shetland was always Norwegian and if Scotland can have Independence then Shetland should be entitled to the same!
Tingwall Kirk Preacher and some of the Congregation
He didn't really want to be photo'ed and was hurrying out,
and I rather naughtily took a quick snap, which is why they are all laughing
- I think it came out rather nicely acutally - so I hope he didn't mind too much!
Having spent a happy couple of hours over at Tingwall I thought I may have time to do some shopping for provisions – Phoebe's minced beef supplies were running low – plus I could reconnoitre the centre of Lerwick, in particular Victoria Pier, where the boat left for the trip round the Isle of Noss, which Sally was hopefully arranging for the coming week.
My Tingwall Luncheon Hostess and Host