Tuesday 31 December 2019

At the End of the Year

It's been a tough year!

Earlier in 2019 I asked some people I was corresponding with what their dream lifestyle was if they were millionaires and could afford anything...

 One lady wrote a particularly interesting response:
"In the end," she concluded,
"good health turns out to be the most important thing of all."
It turned out she and her husband were millionaires, but he had recently died of cancer. And if you don't have your health, what have you got?

And this year I've had a few health problems. Nothing too serious, but enough to keep me away from some of my favourite activities for a while and make me appreciate the importance of good health.

But I'm on the way back!

My target was to manage a hillwalk before the end of the year. And a couple of days ago, The Cairnwell and Carn a Gheoidh provided the perfect reintroduction. It has easy route options that would allow me to head down early and wait for my companions if the sciatica I got earlier in the autumn returned.

A gloomy start for a hillwalk at Glenshee Ski Centre:

The Cairnwell above Glenshee is more Continental than Highland in its industrialisation, but Carn a Gheoidh proved suitably wild in the fog and driving rain, mountain hares and grouse fleeing our approach.

Ice covered lochan on the way to Carn a Gheoidh:

The weather was terrible, but the company was peerless, and in completing my first hillwalk for months - 10km! A milestone! I felt that finally, the recovery to full health is happening.

Old friends: Brian Doogan

Today the sun shone for the first time in what seems like weeks, and so we got out again. 17km this time! On one of my favourite walks between North Berwick and Aberlady.

Craigleith from Broad Sands:

It's hard to say just how much I love this walk, and how grateful I am to be able to do it again!

Aberlady Bay:

So here's to 2020: may all your fortunes rise :)


blueskyscotland said...

Two great walks. That's when you really appreciate the outdoors- when you have sat out for a while through illness or injury then you finally get back again to the level you were at before.

zinnia306 said...

Your last photo here, the Aberlady shoreline, is now on my desktop. Not all of it, just big enough to imagine I'm standing in front of a window in a small stone cottage looking out. My shoulders drop to ease some deep breaths, imagine the sea air breezes, while the cares of the day wash away just enough to keep going. I'm so glad you are back and posting your lovely real photos. Not only informative of the land but very very often exquisite in its render. IOW not swelled unreal with post editing, just purely accomplished by a fine eye, a pretty good camera and yes - love - without question. Thanks, Robert!