Ultima Thule

I had cause this week to look up the term Ultima Thule. I knew that it had been applied by the Romans to the distant land just visible from Orkney, and wanted to find out more.

[su_quote cite=”Wikipedia” url=”http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thule”]Thule was a far-northern location in classical European literature and cartography. Though often considered to be an island in antiquity, modern interpretations of what was meant by Thule often identify it as Norway, an identification supported by modern calculations. Other interpretations include Orkney, Shetland, and Scandinavia. In the Late Middle Ages and Renaissance, Thule was often identified as Iceland or Greenland. Another suggested location is Saaremaa in the Baltic Sea. The term ultima Thule in medieval geographies denotes any distant place located beyond the “borders of the known world”. Sometimes it is used as a proper noun (Ultima Thule) as the Latin name for Greenland when Thule is used for Iceland.[/su_quote]

It was in fact the first day of our Broadband difficulties, so when I found this on the Wikipedia page:

Thule as Tile on the Carta Marina of 1539 by Olaus Magnus, where it is shown located to the north west of the Orkney islands, with a "monster, seen in 1537", a whale ("balena"), and an orca nearby.
Thule as Tile on the Carta Marina of 1539 by Olaus Magnus, where it is shown located to the north west of the Orkney islands, with a “monster, seen in 1537”, a whale (“balena”), and an orca nearby.

and  simply had to see more,  the image would not load. I waited an hour but still did not have 100% of the map.

I left it overnight

The Carta Marina
The Carta Marina

Is this not the most wonderful artefact? I could gaze upon it for hours and hours and keep on seeing new detail.

I want a copy on my wall.

Orkney may not be the farthermost point of the known world these days but it seems that not only There Be Monsteres Here Stille (don’t ask – difficult week all round) but also to be pretty far flung when one is waiting for a delivery. No, the Aga plinth is not yet here. More importantly, it appears that we still lack the essential Broadband part at the island’s exchange. Things got very much worse yesterday and we were without the Internet for most of the day; hoping that was an indicator of Men at Work, we tried not to fret. Late in the day we got our connection back but only at the crippled speed that we have been experiencing for most of this week. Today is no better.

It has been a funny old week. So much is hampered by the lack of download bandwidth and poor Mr L has had a frustrating time of it at work. As for me, I simply abandoned the Internet and concentrated on local materials. I have been ploughing my way through old photo magazines and working on the cover disc tutorials. I am developing editing skills and learning the more esoteric details of how to use my camera.

Extreme Editing (a minority pursuit)
Extreme Editing (a minority pursuit)

I have been unable to watch the Masterchef Finals (NO SPOILERS, PLEASE!) , Poldark or Banished this week. Come bed time, Netflix has been out of the question so our old DVDs have been dusted off. I thoroughly enjoyed The Green Mile.

The virus remains with me. It does seem to be improving and my energy levels are creeping up. My appetite has returned today and the first thing that I did  on rising was to go and seek some breakfast.  I have not eaten breakfast for two weeks or more. So, a good sign.

Lack of interest remains a problem – this evidenced by the fact that I have yet to clean my camera sensor!

What else? Oh, yes, Spring sprung this week. The grass has suddenly burgeoned, wild flowers are popping up all over and lambs are popping out left, right and centre. The coos are out on the fields. The whole landscape has changed in just a few short days. You can also tell that it is Spring by the weather (ooh, irony) – it’s throwing hail down at us today.

I had sufficient Internet yesterday evening to determine that Eskimimi has revealed the topics for Knit Crochet Blog Week. I may crack on with preparing some posts. I need to speak to Gill about it but I expect my KCBW posts to be made over at Sanday Spinners.

A small voice inside me is suggesting that our connectivity problems are going to become worse. Not the island’s but ours. Mr L’s employer provides our telephone and Broadband connection. They were in touch this week to say that they have noticed that we are with BT and not their preferred supplier – this goes back to a time when only BT had a presence at the island’s exchange. In short, they had arranged to cancel BT and move us to the preferred supplier.

BT already know of the cancellation because it came up in our browser windows yesterday. Will the switch happen smoothly, especially at this time, as the exchange is broken. I have a sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach and it’s not caused by lack of food for once.

In Other News – I am feeling a great Need to Spin. It would be a perfect activity whilst the Internet is inaccessible. However, my wheel is also inaccessible. I need to unearth it. Mr L has lit a fire because our Central Heating boiler is broken – we are going to put in a new burner unit but are waiting for it to wend its way to Ultima Thule. He will take his guitar into the sitting room this afternoon to play and I shall join him with my wheel.

Firstly however, I need to bake. We are planning a Focaccia for supper. It’s for dunking in to my Three Cheese Bake in Tomato Sauce. If that doesn’t tempt Mr L’s appetite, nothing will.

Now, can I persuade this post to upload properly?


  1. May 6, 2015

    That’s the coolest map of Scandinavian that I’ve ever seen.
    Flipping through old photo magazines is great. I do that from time to time and experiment with some techniques that I haven’t tried before.
    Now I’ve finally moved into a another apartment (after waiting since the beginning of January). I don’t have a TV in my new place (I don’t want one), so I’ll get a lot of time
    to do creative stuff instead of letting my brain rot while flipping through channels.
    I play more guitar now and I have plans to do this & that.
    The Green Mile is great, both the book and the film.

    Enjoy your breakfasts and the baking. I’m baking bread too (gluten free bread, out of necessity).

    • May 11, 2015

      Hi there, Cardinal. Thanks for stopping by. We do not have a TV set either, haven’t had one for over ten years now. I’ll get last month’s photos up as soon as I can but I have had a busy couple of weeks and am running behind schedule…

  2. May 11, 2015

    TV is boring. I’ve lived approximately half of my adult life without a TV. There’s so many other, more interesting things to do.

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