It’s always a little disconcerting to voyage away from the one place I like to think of as the best in the world, because I then risk an encounter with a place that might actually be a little better, which will then make me feel less smug and I like to feel smug.
The last eight days spent under the eaves of the Cairngorms have been a little unsettling in this respect. So darn beautiful, so varied and so well set up for visitors. There’s a bumper number of activities to enjoy and terrains to explore. We paddled in kayaks and tried not to disturb the nesting Osprey overhead, swam in rivers, scaled Cairngorm, painted pottery and watched wolves and a polar bear at the wildlife park. In the mornings I jogged in the pine scented paths of the larch woods and spied red squirrel and deer en route.
Lismore doesn’t have woods of any considerable size. This morning I tried to take a new running route and after the sixth farm gate, dew soaked trainers, a cow plat splat on my knee and a U-turn encounter with a very ugly bull I admitted that the East and its little red riding hood woods and inexhaustible activities has a certain competitive edge.
I know there’s more to be said on this topic but after all that Eastern exertion I’m just too darn shattered to think.