Tuesday, 10 July 2018

we're having a heatwave, a tropical heatwave.....

I have been in Scotland, near Aviemore and futher north. The origin of my book 'Land of my Father', and home of many happy memories.

My other half (OH) has been working in Kochi, India.

He goes to India because
  1. It is hot and sunny ( when it is not the monsoon season, which it is)
  2. He likes curries
  3. He gets freedom from the mundanities of suburban life and gets to stay in swanky hotels, where he has only to suggest he might like mango with his breakfast curry and a man will find one for him fresh from the nearest mango tree.
I go to Scotland because
  1. I love it. 
  2. It is not usually hot.
  3. I get to stay in traditional Scottish accomodation which is generally not swanky at all, but there are potato scones for breakfast, and the carpets are floral.
So imagine my surprise when I found it was as hot in Scotland as in India.

And imagine OH's surprise when it didn't rain for a whole week in the monsoon season, so he didn't get to wear his spanking brand new super-lite anorak or lie under the special anti-rain canopy beside the pool.

My idea of photography in Scotland is some overcast, moody weather.

What I got was mostly relentless blue skies, and dry vegetation.

Or sea mist, with dull grey skies.


 Even the forest was looking in need of some refreshment.

So I decided not to worry about my photography and just enjoy walking, exploring new places, and collecting pebbles along the way.

I found fields of orchids beside the dunes.

Wild flowers and grasses

A lighthouse at Portmohomack surrounded by gorse.

A swing in the middle of nowhere.

The surprisingly ornate gardens at Dunrobin Castle.

The scenic coastal path from Brora to Golspie

we are walkers

towards Dunrobin on the coastal path

and some litter, but so much less than down south

inevitable collections of human material

On the beach I collected pebbles and litter.

The pebbles mostly stayed in Scotland

Easyjet luggage allowance is not generous, and I already own a lot of stones and pebbles from around the world.




a perfect pebble

In Findhorn the sun set late at 22.15. And there was not a midge in sight. Avoiding the west coast in July was a good plan.

sunset, Findhorn

And in Nairn, where I spent my childhood summers, children were paddling in the same pool that I paddled in 55 years ago with my blue wind up boat.

Not much has changed up there.

Except that the library has moved. When I asked the librarian when it had relocated, she looked at me as if I was a little dim, and replied '1982'.

Which doesn't say much for my powers of observation.

Nairn paddling pool

I came home with just one 'keeper' photograph, from the beautiful Loch an Eilan near Aviemore.

Loch an Eilan © Caroline Fraser

Hopefully later this year it will find its way into the lovely Laundry Gallery in Aviemore, where it will be seen by people who understand the beauty of the Cairngorm National Park, and who, like me, probably prefer it a little cooler.

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