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My Place

  1. A sad time

    A couple of nights ago one of the cottages a couple of miles along the road burnt down. The elderly woman, who lived alone, was inside. There are less than a dozen permanently occupied houses along a seven mile long stretch of single track road and while incidents like this happen all over the country it has really affected the mood of the area.

    I did not know her very well. In fact I donít know any of my neighbours well, a situation I was already wanting to change this year. However ...
  2. Christmas tree harvest

    Well I can tell that December is approaching just by the level of activity in the plantations up the hill over the past few weeks. By the end of October the Christmas tree harvest was in full swing. Tractors and boggies have been running up and down the road while the chainsaws have been busy until late into the night.

    Several years ago the local estate turned its attention to the Christmas tree market and there are now several hundred acres near here turn completly over to growing ...
  3. Flying kites

    Well the kids are back at school, so naturally six weeks of rain has been replaced by glorious sunshine

    And I am back to being stuck behind a computer. But it was too nice a day not to go outside for a while. So I went for a short walk from the house to feel the sun on my face for a bit.
    The air has started to taste different. I can't describe it, you can't explain unless you know, but it tasted like autumn (already! yikes). It wasn't strong, but it was there.
  4. Mini toad migration

    Every spring the road outside my house is crammed with hundreds of toads all moving from their feeding grounds in the woods to the small loch across the field.
    While the road isn't busy I sometimes go out and give them a helping hand to get to the field edge.

    This weekend I discovered that all the progeny of the spring mating are finding their own ways in the world and looking for good places to live. ...
    Tags: migration, toads
  5. My Place

    Iíve never lived anywhere long. So realising this year that I had lived in the same house for eight years, I began thinking it was time I put down some roots and thought of it as My place.

    I live in an old sandstone cottage, surrounded by woods and overlooking farmland. In spite of being halfway between two cities (an hour from each) it feels like one of the quietest places in the country. My garden marks the Highland boundary fault line. In front are the Mearns, rich farmland, the ...
    Tags: place, quarries