We are content.

As readers of this blog may remember, we do the lochside walk along from Kirkhill House on most mid-days and throughout the seasons therefore in all kinds of weather.

Clearing away and laundering duties following the departure of our B&B guests having been accomplished to the satisfaction of the lady of the house, we will take a flask of soup or coffee and a lunchbox of sandwiches for a makeshift picnic sitting on the shattered concrete ruins of a WW2 observation post / gun emplacement. Depending on the direction of the wind and condition of the weather we can always find some kind of shelter there.

Our walk is better than any medicine, whatever may ail us. The pressures of what may have happened in the world at large or the world of ourselves and our families - everything is wonderfully put into perspective. This brief exposure to wind and weather together with the exercise of physical and mental muscles and the chance to talk together should we feel like talking - we may return home cold and wet or warm and dry but we always return home feeling better about all things than when starting out an hour or so before.

The day before yesterday was very warm for the Highlands, some eighteen degrees in fact, and without appreciable breeze. There was an ethereal - almost surreal quality about the surrounding ampitheatre of mountains and the blue-mirrored stillness of Loch Ewe. Sheep and lambs lay panting in the field, a lizard scuttled away into the sheltering tangle, occasional small fish leapt into the air from the seawater margins. Our usual friend, the lady seagull finally made her way to us from (presumably) her nest over on the island a mile away. We looked out for the otter we have sometimes observed here, but no luck today. Today was perfect nevertheless.

Yesterday it was even warmer. Hot! And yesterday we saw otters, plural! We had decided to do the rocky mid-day walk we often did with our dogs, the walk we call 'The Caves' along the undercliff past the village of Laide, two or three miles north from here. Half way along we first spotted the two of them, always swimming in close proximity to each other and close enough to us to recognise mother and cub. We weren't sure at first whether they were hunting or playing but concluded we must be witnessing a session of otterly play-training. The pair of them were making their way south close in to the tide line, submerging with looped tails, re-surfacing often with a leap skywards, rolling and nuzzling each other. When they reached the point where we know the rocks, at that stage of the tide underwater, go out to sea in a kind of peninsula they too went out until we could see them no more. Half an hour later and a mile further along the undercliff, as we were sitting eating our sandwiches, 'Look! here they are again,' exclaimed Dee. And so they were, mother and cub unmistakably the ones we had seen earlier. We know the likely location of two or three holt sites along here. We watched them as they came out on to rocks still wet from the retreating tide, messed around, dived back in, progressing ever further south until out of sight.

Everything, they say, is relative. So what, if the boys and girls gambling on companies or currencies down in the Big City are 'making' money or losing it? So what if the Prime Minister is giving or receiving greater and greater insults to or from his political foes? So what if , somewhere in the dusty mountains of Afghanistan a terminally impoverished farmer is growing a crop for which rich people who should know better will pay the dealers enough to feed an entire Afghanistan region for a year?You know about such things and can do nothing to change them.

Right here and right now as the sea birds call and the slow tide laps, this is real, this is Wester-Ross, this is our life. We cannot change it and have no wish to change it. We are content.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: only a member of this blog may post a comment.