Is there any better view than the train from Glasgow to Lochgliphead, as I was inching my way closer to the bothy? I'd stayed overnight in Edinburgh and caught an early train west, last Thursday week.Charlie met me at Arrochar and we headed on that familar road, home. The bothies were sparkling in hot sunshine when we arrived.
Someone needed to cut the verge, after our long absence. The problem is, we are so tied to Dorset in high summer, the veg garden doesn't grow itself, as Charlie often says.
A walk that afternoon.The glow of the little timber-lined cottage makes me so happy in the evenings. Early to bed. The next day, the air was soft and completely still - not a breath of wind. We had the laziest day, lunch in Crinan, home, nap, early supper.
All of a sudden, the soft grey clouds parted, and the evening was golden.A magical sunset. The following morning was fresh and fair. Looking over to the paps of Jura. Nothing nicer that our little bothy. So simple, it's so good. Lunch outside. Another long nap then a swim for the dogs. And drinks with our neighbours, Ross and Mo, and the happiest night, and on Sunday, in the rain, we said goodbye to the cottage for a week or two and headed south. I was stopping in Cumbria, Charlie back to Dorset. We broke our journey with a little visit, and a walk for the dogs - we went to the remarkably remote church of St. Ninian's, Brougham, just to the east of Penrith. A magical place. We arrived as one of the rare services was finishing. This beautiful building, utterly unspoiled, is cared for by the Churches Conservation Trust. I was very into the altar jug. Look at this so sad tablet on the wall. And, a good long day in Cumbria, and a good but very busy week in London, and home, on Saturday, to an autumnal garden bursting with dahlias and pumpkins. It has been our Harvest lunch in the village. A lovely, simple service in the church, complete with beautiful decorations, followed by lunch which rolled in to the early evening, in the walled garden barn. I took these photos on my way home. Flowers in the gloaming. And the harvest is safely gathered for another year. The days suddenly grow shorter, the weather stormy. There is nothing more magical than this gentle turn of the season, as the earth rests, autumn settles in, and the turn of the year moves forward. Today, in church, we sang a hymn by Joseph the Hymnographer, who, according to our hymn books, died in the year 883 - 1,140 years ago. Just when we are worrying about what's happening next week, or next month, or next year - it can be good to bear this in mind - life has its ups and downs, but the ancient rhythm of the seasons has its gentle heartbeat, year in, year out, unchanging, for longer than we can imagine - stretching far into the distant past, and far into the distant future. That is the power of the Harvest Song.