I realized I have been postponing doing a lot of posts, because I keep trying to get this one done first.
It is the last piece of the one I wrote last year…Leaving Scotland.
Returning to Scotland is a crap title. Coming home? Not quite right after spending a couple of months ensconced in family, friends, pets and house.
The Final Season? Closer, but it’s not true. When I last wrote about my love affair with Scotland, it was after being in our home here, for three seasons.
A year ago we moved into this crazy house. But I left for the US, on October 10th. Missed winter, or so I thought!
When I left California, to come back here, our daughter was in her usual garb, shorts and bare feet. “it is winter somewhere in the world” I constantly tell her. But I was famous in my family for running outside in snow barefoot, in a cotton mini dress, when I was ten. I never wore shoes, so I understand her love of direct contact with the earth, and can’t harass her too much.
But it was HOT when I left California. I was really looking forward to the delicious Scottish climate.
What I underestimated was the time travel aspect of it all. Going from California and our 1948 house, to our 18th century home in Scotland…in January.
It took about 2 weeks to warm up the stone walls. I would sit in the parlour, with a fire raging, the heaters on, and wonder if I was actually going to get frostbite in front of a fireplace.
But that was nothing on the darkness.
Oh my god, the darkness. At night, you can see nothing. I would stand in the kitchen door, while the puppy went out, and could literally see nothing beyond a 4-5 yard ring of lit by the open doorway. The puppy was eaten by the inky darkness, completely invisible, probably 10 feet from the front door.
To make it more of a challenge, dusk began at 3, and the sun was not fully up until almost 9:30. It was like living in a dark box.
So you shut all the shutters, and then pull the curtains across, shove upholstered thingies against the drafts, and hunker down. Waiting. You cannot help but think of all those generations that came before, when THERE WAS NO GLASS in those windows! Those were some tough people.
And then the snow came. And it was wondrous. Insanely beautiful. Everything you have ever read about how beautiful snow is. The snow of another century, another time and place. The kind of snow that has a purpose. It makes the world beautiful and perfect.
Getting to work was not so wondrous., beautiful or perfect.
But here we are, just 4 weeks later. Sun is up by 6:30, and still in the sky at 5. The crocuses are pushing up, and there are a lot of waddling sheep out in the fields. Things move fast here. There is a lot to do. A lot to squeeze into each season. Gotta pack it all in there. ALL those Daffodils and lambs…PACK THEM IN!!!!