Dunkeld

It’s cold. Yes it is March, but it’s colder than the days leading up to this Sunday, when we headed once more Northwards, to find a place to picnic and wander. Dunkeld is so close to us that it’s an easy choice; whip up the M90, onto the A9 and we’re 80% of the way there. It’s a beautiful little town with some really great little deli’s and cafés on the main drag, with a few pub grub places on the side streets, and one particularly nice little place as you walk to the cathedral.

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Once more we wandered aimlessly as Missy ran riot, fuelled by cake and driven by adventure. Up and down grassy embankments she ran; stomping on blocks of ice she passed. It’s been a busy old time for us, with me down in London and Mrs constantly working. There seems to be no end in sight as we charge onward, making lives for ourselves and setting up the mantle for the future. I never stop to think about things as they happen, just make sure I’m set up properly for the next thing, and this leads to an evaporation of time unlike anything I’ve ever experienced. Swathes of time lost to the constant chattering of the mind, the wracking of the body in some ill-measured quest to lose a few pounds, and the unachievable goal of making an impact.

So much is said about life/work balance and we’ve never been in a better place. We sometimes can’t believe we have the ability to have a walk at lunchtime or nip to the shop. For me, it’s a lot easier as I have no boss, no time clock or punch in. Having the flexibility to work for yourself is an absolute joy, but with it comes the undeniable lack of switch-off time. I work from the minute I wake to the minute I sleep; mentally turning questions into actions; physically making things happen. A regular job, whatever that is, feels quite simple by comparison, but the downside of working around the clock has monumental upsides. Pick your fights, I guess.

Dunkeld has a quiet, peaceful feel as you meander through the mews and rows of mill houses. There’s not much going on besides some visitors eating and chatting, but not very much else. We like to watch the river flow and walk around the Cathedral gardens, looking at the twisted trees and reading the headstones; Missy taking extra joy out of making footprints in the sloppy snow. Her hands are freezing and her gloves soaked through with icy water, but she doesn’t care. Daddy is getting hit with snow and it’s the best thing ever. A tourist with camera primed smiles and talks to Missy as she runs past her; something about her hair colour. Missy immediately turns shy and darts back to me as I snap away myself. It’s cold and time to go. We make our way back to the car and down the A9, where vast roadworks blast to convert the A9 into a dual-carriageway; a safety concern for decades finally being addressed.

It’s nice to get back and relax; there’s a big week of London-bound work coming up and I’m sure FlyBe are going to impound my suitcase this time; so many stories of their metal framed testing pots being purposefully reduced in size to force a £50 charge is getting me all anxious and apprehensive. My camera gear goes in my suitcase, along with what passes as clothes these days, and I just don’t want it lumped in to the hold by some uninterested, uninspired luggage person. My camera is my one great passion in this life and I can’t stand the thought of it being broken.

We’ll see how it goes.

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