|If by any chance you have not see "The Show" here is a link...
I am so overwhelmed with the amount of truly wonderful people out there inspired by Fair Isle and my story as told by New Lives in the Wild UK. with Ben Fogle. Thank you so much for all your well wishes and plans to come to Fair Isle, my little home of joy and beauty. I hope to help who ever I can to get here if they wish a visit in the new year.
On Thursday Dec 10th 2015 when the the show first aired I heard Channel 5 had 1.6 Million viewers during the broadcast. The show has been broadcasted a few more times and plus internet viewing has made it well watched by so many folks. I started getting emails and Facebook friend requests before the show even started from a few press stories... Daily Mail & Daily Record
In fact I was getting so many friend requests that Facebook suggested I add a Follow button to let people see any thing I choose to make public. (I wouldn't put it on Facebook if I didn't want it public anyways, so you are not missing much.) Please follow me if you wish...
At 9pm I started watching the show for the first time... They where here shooting and in production in mid June so it had been a long wait and a bit of a worry as how I would be portrayed for quite awhile.... I watched it with some of my friends and neighbours with plenty of French sparkling wine. Ten minutes in my phone started ringing... it didn't stop during the whole show. (hello I'm in England and I am watching you on TV right now... I would like to bring my wife and I up to your Guesthouse?) I didn't want to be rude but I'm watching it too! call back tomorrow. please. that happened 4 times during the show... I love the enthusiasm and go for it now of these folks!
My phone rang the rest of the night... some friends... some more interested folks... at 1;30am. my phone rang from a lovely guy just wanting to talk about living the dream for an hour... then my phone rang at 7:30 am, and went on to do so all weekend...My son Henry was laughing at me everytime the phone rang. Friday morning when I checked Facebook I had over 1000 followers (now over 1700 follower) Plus over 1000 friend requests most not duplicated because I guess folk don't know the difference between friend and follower. I have accepted very few as friends In fact I had just gone through my facebook account and deleted a bunch of friends I had never met which seems sort of silly now. My facebook mail inbox said +99 messages! but it was hundreds... I had hundreds of other folks asking to join and messaging at my other facebook groups too, - Friends of Fair Isle - Auld Haa Guesthouse - Artist T.H, Hyndman page.
When I looked at my Email it was overwhelming! how can I answer all of this? I'm just one guy and everytime a answer a message I get 2 more questions back. it's not just emails and Facebook! I had 20,000 hit on my blog the first night, over 50,000 this week. My youtube videos are getting lots of playtime too. Then there is Twitter, Pinterest, Flickr, LinkedIn etc. things I hardly use, all asking for connections. At this point I have only managed to get to about 25% of the folks who have questions....
|Fair Isle gone Hollywood!
Ok, I am going to try and answer most questions...
- How do I get to Fair Isle? look at this Travel info link.
- Can you send me some Guesthouse info? Auld Haa Guesthouse
- How do I get a Patchwork Cap like yours? did not make it... I bought in Dublin, Ireland on my travels: John Hanly & co.
- I would like to buy a Puffin Hat? I'm sorry I don't have any stock. I plan to make some in the new year. So talk to me in Feburary if you are still interested? The price is 40 pounds each.
|Was Ben Fogle nice?
Yes, he is genuinely a nice guy and I think it shows on camera quite well. Though he was only around for a few days and I realized this was him doing his job and at work. He is very good at his job. And he still came across very humble and pleasant. There is a real man in there, like so many that travel for work and have long days, I could tell he missed his family and had all those pressure that goes along with it. Being away from home so much, even though he gets to go to amazing places is hard for him as a father and a husband I gathered. I don't get jealous of celebrates... I was however very jealous as Ben told me of his new The Big Fish fishing show between takes... Again he is travelling the world fishing instead of interviewing weirdos like me. Nice work if you can get it! I kept on saying "I'm on the wrong show! take me fishing! please!" Well I took Ben fishing with Jimmy and Daniel off of Fair Isle and that was pretty darn good too.
What about living alone?
Well first, my son lives with me. He goes to school in Lerwick, like all kids do from the outer isles in Shetland. It is not a fancy boarding school... it is Anderson High School in Shetland and they have living accommodations for student who live in the more remote areas of Shetland. This is cheaper for the Shetland Islands Council than having so many teachers for so few students stationed in remote places. In our case since the age of 12 Henry has gone to school only to come home every third weekend and on holidays. So yes, it does feel as I live alone most of the time. And no, I did not send my son away to a fancy boarding school.
In the past few years I have met a couple of very wonderful women who have travelled to Fair Isle, unfortunately personal commitments and other issues have kept us apart. Dreaming and wanting to move to such a remote place is easy, the realities are very hard on any relationship or person. Let's face it, relationships are not easy anywhere. Fair Isle does add a bit more complexity to it all. Yes I have gotten many correspondences from hopefully single woman... One said " If you every get tried of being lonely, let me know?" I wrote back, "If it was only that easy." I noticed she lived in Portland, Oregon... (Very convenient... not!) she wrote back, "I know" I don't think I'll hear from her again. I was talking to a friend and noted... If a single Mom was getting this type of attention from so many unknown men, she would be petrified and overwhelmed! I feel much the same as a single Dad. It is all very flattering and with good intentions.