Pictorial blethers

By blethers

Still alive

I think I've said this several times over the past year, but it's as true now as it ever was: first thing in the morning is usually the hardest moment of every day, not for the old reasons - wanting to sleep longer, not feeling like going to work, that sort of thing - but because I review the day ahead and see it only in terms of time passed until ... when? Too often I realise it's until I can sit down with my dinner and a glass of wine and then fall asleep over the telly, and then think what an incredible waste of a day that is, one that is repeated over and over in a monotonous trickle. Normal life, pre-Covid, had sufficient distractions to prevent this; then I could have some precise little panic about packing for a trip, or organising myself for a day in Glasgow, or preparing a dinner for friends, or being concert-ready for some gig... But not now. 

It wasn't even a sunny morning today - it was grey and drizzling and did nothing to lift the mood. It was not, however, in an attempt to lift anything that I found myself crawling inside an awkward corner cupboard in the kitchen and throwing out a million plastic carrier bags of dubious vintage, some of which dissolved in what resembled Lux soap flakes (does Lux still exist?) all over the floor. I just did it. Now the cupboard is clean and organised and we have no random carrier bags left to empty the Dyson into because I was over-enthusiastic ... Fool.

My rescue came in the afternoon. I'd arranged to meet up with my pal Di for a walk - she was going to show me one of her discoveries more accessible from her end than mine. We bashed up a forestry road that led off the road "over the hill" to Ardentinny - you can see the B-road in the main photo, with Loch Eck in the background - then up a steep and in places muddy path till we came out onto the open hillside. It was then that I spotted a tempting outcrop of rock a couple of hundred metres away on the other side of a wire fence ...

Reader, that's where we ended up. We managed to straddle the fence (harder for short-arsed me) and traverse the boggy ground on the other side and found ourselves with the wonderful view that went from Loch Eck  (second Extra) to Loch Long. I yielded to temptation and scrambled up onto the rock, so the first Extra is of me looking indecently triumphant - but every childish escapade is another two fingers to advancing decrepitude. We had worried that we might have had to descend some of the steeper bits on our behinds, but this proved not to be necessary and we plunged downhill with great aplomb.

By the time we got back to where we'd left the cars, the sun was appearing, the cloud breaking up all around us. That's when I took the main photo. I felt knackered and alive and much more cheerful. There was only one little drawback, and I didn't discover it till I was home again and washing my hands, muddy from that scramble on the rocks. I'd picked up a tiny tick, embedded at the base of my thumb ...

Himself did the honours and all is well. I have excellent tick tweezers.

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