Clarinda (my OH’s Mum) – a Londoner by birth, but a Scot by choice and location – has had a blog for a while detailing the various goings on in and around the area of Loch Inver in the North West of Scotland.
Life in the modern Highlands is quite different from the romantisised image many people might have; it is rural but highly creative, sparsely populated but community oriented, tranquil but very active! From Gaelic choirs to country dancing, from internet based art enterprises to tigers, and from soaring mountains to national Geoparks. Clarinda sets out to give a locals-eye-view of life in the Assynt area over the course of the year.
It is wonderful to read about active communities in rural areas. I am originally from a small community (at the other end of the country), and my mother was always a great example to me of a person who gets involved in community activities (quilting groups, WRI, Macmillan Cancer Support fund-raising group, etc etc). There always seems to be something going on if you’re willing to look for it! And this goes some way toward dispelling the media’s belief that community is dead – oh no, it is alive and kicking in Assynt and the Borders, if no where else.
Clarinda is also a very talented baker who has introduced me to the world of sourdoughs. I had no idea about the different sourdough cultures and how they impact upon the taste and consistency of the bread, but I am now a big sourdough convert and am very much looking forward to Tim’s Russian Black Bread (which involves a hefty whack of treacle, so I’ve doubly happy!) With any luck I can start getting over whatever issue yeast and I have with baking (i.e. it doesn’t like me, for some reason) and start experimenting in breads too. All in good time.
But for now I can report that the next post (OH’s birthday cake!) has been baked and partially consumed – I will report in full over the weekend 🙂