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"World tour of Scotland" at www.nigelandkathyinscotland.blogspot.com

Saturday, 18 February 2012

Who's Watching Who?

It’s been a windy winter. On several nights the wind has roared so loudly through the mountains that we couldn’t hear the television even at highest volume. But now the sun has returned to Lochranza village after two months of shade. I used to wonder why houses were built on the sunless side of the glen and suspected it must be for the deeper water when, in past times, the fishing boats came in. Now I realise it’s also the windless side; the oldest houses were built in well-protected positions. On the Campsite, in winter, the low sun pops in and out between the three surrounding hills. Any day now it will be clearing the summits.

In winter in Lochranza you go to parties in wellies. Lochranza has a strong community with lots of winter parties to warm up the short, dark days. Word of mouth travels much quicker than text messages here. In fact, when the gales of January 3rd nearly blew the Stags Pavilion down, the whole village arrived to help in no time. (The Stags, by the way, has been rebuilt and is even better than before.)

Lochranza has no light pollution so on clear nights the stars appear to be very close and look like bright glowing lamps. Driving up the Boguillie Road at night you have to weave in and out of the black face sheep who like to sleep on the road. Stags too loom up in your headlights.

Our caravan base on the Campsite has an earth bank close behind, beyond which is a field and the dominating presence of Torr Nead. Sometimes we draw back the curtains to find the face of a red deer gazing in from the bank. Perhaps it is Deer-vid Attenborough busy observing the habits of the human being.