Iona & Glencoe
So the house in Sandy, Beds is sold and we're moving on - resolutely northwards. This morning meant waking in thew Kings House Hotel on the edge of Rannoch Moor in the Scottish Highlands, Glencoe the next step om the wilderness. I lived for some years in Glencoe, a curious mixture of homes and an often overpowering environment. Sitting at my writing tables I would be startled by banks of cloud pouring down over mountainsides. These mountains brood, they converse amongst themselves, and humasns who dare climb there are often whipped from the hillsides and thrown to their deaths. Nature used to accord with my writing though where publishers didn't - I remember finishing one book, and looking out to find a pine marten pawing at the french window while deer grazed the flowerbeds below.
Time is odd. It's maybe seventeen years since I was in Glencoe last. And only nine hours since I was there today but already that visit seems historical. A drive down the Argyll coast to Oban, a ferry across to the Isle of Mull, and now we're on Iona, a true holy island, treated as sacred long before the the Christians arrived here to 'baptise' it all. A powerful stop en route saw us in the Druid circle of standing stones known as Long Meg and her sisters in the north of England. Long Meg is a tall stone marking, and shielding, the entrance. Entering that way, saying a prayer at the centre, the thins cry of two birds marked the moment. They were oyster catchers. It's intriguing to meet these shoreline birds (they were in Glencoe today, on the shores of Loch Leven) in their inland heaths of summer.
Time now to dream and see what messages Iona has to send - the 'veils' between physical and non-physical realities are famously thin here.