Opposites: Peel, Isle of Man

Peel, Isle of Man

The weekly photo challenge asks us for opposites. Here, you can take your pick: land and water (or perhaps that should be earth, sea and sky); natural and man-made; high and low; near and far; boats on the River Neb and cars on the land. I might also add old and new – Peel’s sheltered harbour was ruled by Norse Vikings for over four centuries, and remains the Isle of Man’s major fishing port today, where the islander’s way of life blends the traditional with the modern.  

The Isle of Man is geographically close to the north west of England (and Scotland, Wales and Ireland are visible from it) but has very much its own soul. Islanders and visitors greet the fairies as they cross the Fairy Bridge. You may have heard  of the tailless Manx cat, but did you know that they have rare, multi-horned sheep too?

Manx Loaghtan ram with four horns

It was a blustery, grey day when we visited Peel but the harbour and town still had a pretty, chocolate box look when viewed from the hillside opposite. In the distance you can see hints of the rolling clouds and mist that often hang over this place. Folk lore tells us it’s summoned up by Mannannán’s magic to conceal and protect the island. I have to say I didn’t feel all that protected later that day, navigating the car over the hills through the mist on twisting paths, unable to see more than a few feet ahead.

27 Replies to “Opposites: Peel, Isle of Man”

  1. Your invitation to look for opposites had me noticing the above and below of water. Those heavy clouds and the river, the same grey, but opposed in viewpoint. I wonder if they exchange perspectives through the fairies. What a charming glimpse of a place I know nothing about! Thank you!

    1. We get to explore all the subtleties of grey skies in my part of the world. It makes it all the nicer when we do get a clear blue day.

  2. Being an Island girl I am quite ashamed to say I have never been to t he Isle of Man. I am from the Isle of Wight and my husband from the Channel Islands. We have good friends who live there who visited us here in France last year, so maybe next year we will go there. I knew all about the Manx cat but I have never heard of the sheep, strange looking! Have a lovely weekend

    1. It was the first I’d seen too. You’re right – the softness of the wool is a contrast to the toughness of those horns!

      1. Not just wool and horns, but white and green (wall), red and black (door), green and yellow (hay), smooth and rough (texture of stone edge and whitewash), light and dark (beams against wall and interior/ exterior), plus the mystery of what lies behind the open door contrasting with the exposure of the rest …..

    1. I hope you’ll build some savouring time into your travels – it can be tempting to try to cover too much of the country in just one trip.

      1. Unfortunately it’s a cruise so we won’t have much time to do a lot of free sightseeing. But I have a sneaking suspicion once I get Drollery there he’s going to want to come back and do his own thing. 😀

  3. Wow! I have never seen sheep like that. Rare, indeed. And fascinating.

  4. My ancient ancestors left Jurby in the Isle of Man to come to the American colonies in the 1750’s. They did not bring one of those sheep with them, but I wish they had. Beautiful picture of the harbor.

    1. It’s a small world! One of my sweetheart’s ancestors travelled to the US (in a roundabout way) from the Parish of Rushen.

  5. I’d love to visit the Isle of Man…thank goodness for Google Maps, through them I have ‘driven’ around the Island. 😀

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