The combination of the World of Tea Towels and the World of Social Media can introduce you to some interesting, and fascinating, people across the world. I love it. Beth often reads my Tea Towel Blogs. She read Rocky the Robin on 28 September 2020 and told me about her Puffin Tea Towel. I don’t know how I have the cheek but I asked Beth to send me a photo because I hadn’t seen that one. She sent me one, then another because she thought it was a better photo. This is a great tea towel and I asked Beth if she would like to be a Guest Tea Towel. She accepted the challenge and then sent a third photo. This is her story:
“Tea towels aren’t terribly common in the US. That’s not to say that you can’t find them here, but not as easily as you can in the UK. We seem to gravitate toward the more utilitarian dish towel. Not very pretty, but certainly functional. Some years back, I discovered Scotland-themed tea towels for sale on Etsy.com [my love of all things Scottish is legendary amongst my friends] and decided they would make great throw pillows. What a super way to display these wonderful pictures! I didn’t really think that plan through though. I managed to make six or eight pillows before I realized that they were overrunning my home. As much as I loved my vintage piper-turned-pillow-tea-towel, or my map of Scotland made entirely of town and village names [also now a pillow], I just didn’t have any more room for them. Sigh. So, I began buying them with a view toward actually using them every day in my kitchen. Now I certainly don’t have even a fraction of the number of towels in the Virtual Tea Towel Museum, but I can’t seem to pass up a striking or pretty towel of a Scottish nature.
I love Scotland so much, I save my vacation time for two years at a stretch, and use that time for a month-long vacation there. That may sound extravagant, but it doesn’t make much sense to take a shorter vacation there when you are traveling from California. My older body is no longer tolerant of long stretches on an airplane, and it takes me longer each trip to recover. My most recent trip there was scheduled for this past May. I normally like to vacation there in September, but it has been a long-time dream of mine to see puffins. After doing a bit of research, I found that puffins have left their nesting grounds each year by sometime in August, so I was never able to see them during past visits. This year’s vacation was planned especially to see the puffins. And then life proved that all my plans meant nothing in the grand scheme of things when COVID-19 came along.
I think I was Googling puffins when I came across the picture of Clare Baird’s colorful puffin. I fell in love immediately, not only with the puffin artwork, but Clare’s work in general. Her style is at once both realistic and whimsical. It wasn’t a difficult decision at all to add this beautiful towel to my expanding collection. Every time I look at it, I am reminded that with any luck, I will be able to see a puffin in real life, hopefully in May of 2021. Until then, the towel will have to suffice.”
What a great story. I have found that there are many places I would like to revisit but don’t have the time or energy to do so and a tea towel suffices. Thank you Beth for sharing the story and I do hope you get there in time for the puffins. Try Isle of May, Lunga, Orkney or if you go just south of the border to the Farne Islands. I’m off to see if the Puffin is on Clare’s website!!