Ah, Scotland, home of the vicious killer red squirrel, if the road signs are anything to go by (sure, they look cute).
It’s been a lovely restful few days in Dumfries and Galloway which is full of spectacular and somewhat cloudy scenery. It’s also full of lovely nature reserves full of signs explaining what all the lovely birds and animals are that you’re currently not seeing. There are rushing woodland burns where you can not see dipper, mature woodlands where you can not see red squirrels, splendid hillsides where, if you’re me, you can just miss seeing a magnificent stag and, on the river Cree, there’s a beautiful calm pool surrounded by reeds where – if you sit very still and quiet for a couple of hours before dusk – you’ve a very good chance of not seeing otter.
But if nature was easy, what would be the fun in that? And we did see some glorious sights (including, in the end, more red squirrel than you could shake a stick at) and sometimes just sitting still and quietly and waiting is an end in itself, and something I don’t get enough of in my life (except when there are signalling problems at Clapham Junction).
And it’s nice to be somewhere where what traffic hazards there are are on four legs instead of four wheels. And even there, one canny farmer may have discovered a solution to the problem of narrow winding roads populated by wandering sheep:
He’s painted them bright orange. Now all we need to do is teach them how to cycle…