Thursday, October 25, 2012

The compass swings to the north


Fallen leaves carpet the ground, the freezer is full of soup, the weather is forecast to turn much colder, and most sensible creatures are snuggling down where it’s warm and sheltered. So what is the Transit household doing in this situation? The answer is simple: busily packing for our autumn migration to the glorious far north-west of Scotland. As the winds from the arctic begin to blow, we are getting ready to head off at the weekend in the direction they are coming from, and what’s more, we’re looking forward to it.

As regular readers will know, we enjoy our twice-yearly visits to the north-west Highlands enormously and are keenly anticipating our arrival and the pleasant process of settling-in and seeing our friends again. Whilst there I will knit more socks at the weekly Knit’n Natter meetings, walk along the road to the little church with one of the best views in theworld and appreciate yet again the wondrous variety of landscape our little offshore islands have to offer.

Naturally my trusty laptop will accompany us and I’ll catch up with you all when we arrive. Until then it’s back to the sorting and packing. I love it really…. J

69 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. Thanks, Rosie, and good luck with the new house.

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  2. Hello Perpetua:
    The thought of travelling always fills us with a certain amount of dread, so much so that, immediately prior to departing for foreign parts, we are on the point of calling the whole thing off. But, the excitement of arrival in those parts of the world one cherishes in the heart or the thrill of arrival in an entirely new environment keep us, and we are sure you, on the move!!!

    Wishing you safe travelling to your slice of Paradise in the North!!

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    1. Thanks, Jane and Lance. I have to confess to enjoying the travelling too, especially as we travel under our own steam, enjoying the changing scenery and not subject to the vagaries of airline or train timetables. We take the journey more gently as we get older, and it will take us two full days to get there.

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  3. Have a safe trip.....I enjoy travelling, but the packing is something else!
    However, it is worth it to see friends again.

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    1. Thanks, Fly. The travelling is always fun and the packing gets easier every time. as I learn more accurately what we need or didn't use last time. System is all! :-)

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  4. You certainly have the right title for your blog Perpetua. How your constitution can stand the constant travelling I just cannot fathom.
    Sooner thee than me, but, having said that, enjoy your journey and of course your arrival.
    Blessings.

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    1. LOL! I chose it for a purpose, Ray, and it sums up our life pretty accurately. The travelling itself is always enjoyable, but I will confess it takes us longer to recover from it as we get older. Still, our time is our own, so we don't need to rush.

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  5. Have a safe journey Perpetua xx

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    1. Thanks, Ayak. The weather forecast is quite good and that always helps. :-)

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  6. Bless you on your travels, Perpetua. You are always welcome for a cuppa if you stop by Southport on the way... :-)

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    1. Thanks, Broad. I had hoped we might be able to drop in, but you have family staying and we have family to see, so it will have to wait for a future trip, I'm afraid.

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  7. Enjoy the trip, and I know you will enjoy arriving and being there. Jx

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    1. Thanks, Janice. We'll enjoy all of it, even the travelling, especially if the sun manages to peep out for a little from behind this eternal cloud.

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  8. Although I can't handle temperature that drops below 70F, I do love to look at those beautiful landscapes in your country. If only it weren't so cold, I'd be there doing my tourist bit like a shot. Have a wonderful time on your trip.

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    1. Astrid, after a lifetime in warm climates, you are what we northerners would call 'nesh'. :-) It's a shame, because if you could cope with the climate, you would love the British countryside, as it is so varied and beautiful. Still, I'm one to talk - if the temperature goes much above 70F for long, I think it's too hot!

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  9. Safe travels Perpetua - look forward to your Scottish report when you have settled back in.

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    1. Thanks, Rosemary. The worst of the packing is done, so I'm slowing down and staring to anticipate the pleasure of the journey. Reports definitely to follow.....

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  10. The North Wind doth blow (according to tonight's forecast) but hang that. The scenery is beautiful, the friends are plentiful and the welcome is warm. Have a safe journey and and wonderful time in Scotland

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    1. Thanks, Molly. Whatever happens with the weather, we will enjoy ourselves. After several autumn trips, we're used to its vagaries. Just hoping we don't get snowed in before we get back, as has happened before.....

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  11. Have a safe journey and I look forward to your future postings from Scotland.

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    1. Thanks, Susan. With DH's new camera to help me, I'm hoping to get some good photos to illustrate them.

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  12. Very sensible! I relish the turning to colder weather, although I do wish the plumbers would get a move on in finishing connecting up our new boiler. With no central heating, the corridors of the house are getting distinctly chilly already.
    Your Welsh ash tree still looks so green in that photo: here all is molten gold. Have a safe trip and a wonderful stay - we look forward to your photos.

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    1. Thanks, DB. Brrrr, a castle without central heating at this time of year sounds like a test of endurance. Here's hoping the new boiler will be working soon.

      Yes, the ash tree has only turned a yellowish-green this year, probably because of the lack of frost so far. But despite the still, unusually mild weather, the leaves have dropped very heavily this week as the photo shows. I'm looking forward to the colours in the Highlands. :-)

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  13. We all need to get out and away at times, a change of scenery if you will. It's good for the soul. Have fun, relax, and share pictures of the socks please.

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    1. Thanks, Rubye, you're absolutely right. We love our time in Scotland and never tire of the beauty of the landscape. As for pictures of the socks, I'll see what I can do.....:-)

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  14. Safe travel and safe arrival. I shall look forward to your posts from there. Blessings.

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    1. Thanks, Bonnie. There is usually plenty going on when we get there, so watch this space.... :-)

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  15. Your tree looks beautiful - it is stunning photograph.
    I always like other people's comments and do read them - I wonder if this is a little rude, actually, because they're for you, not me - but Ray's comments about your blog title made me smile. In a recent econversation with Janice, I had to smile too, because she found it really strange to know your and Ayak's REAL names!! And I had to stop for a moment because, she's right - you are Perpetua!
    Safe journey, enjoy the sights. Axxx

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    1. I meant that to me (and to Janice) your REAL name is Perpetua! Axxx

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    2. LOL, Annie, I DO know what you mean and Janice told me the same herself when I emailed her. :-) Having met three bloggers in person now I still tend to think of the two who use pseudonyms by those names and not their given ones. And I know at least some people I've been in contact with off the blog tend still to think of me as Perpetua. Old habits die hard....

      Glad you like our tree. It's just outside the bathroom window and dominates our view of the countryside. We love it dearly.

      As for reading comments, I always read the comments on other people's blogs (unless there are just too many) and enjoy the interplay between them and the blogger. A blog is a public document and the conversation which grows out of a good comments thread is meant for everyone to enjoy in my opinion.

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  16. Oh, how I wish I could just wiggle my nose and be there. I am grateful for the Arizona sunshine and don't like to complain. I'm in agreement with you on the temperature. It is 80 degrees right now on our back porch. The nights are cooling off but it is still too hot to walk and enjoy being outdoors. I will get there one of these days. In the meantime, I have lots of Jane Austen movies lined up to watch...again...and am patiently waiting for Downton Abby's new season. Take special care.

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    1. Hello, Janet, thank you and how nice to see you. :-) I sympathise with you about your heat - 80F at the end of October is much too hot, especially after the scorching summer you've just endured. Fingers crossed it will cool down for you soon.

      It's a while since I watched any of the dramatisations of Jane Austen's novels, but I'm thoroughly enjoying the latest series of Downton Abbey and know you will too. Sadly we'll miss the last two episodes as we'll be away without TV, but we'll catch up with them sometime...

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  17. I can't wait to see what your journey brings, Perpetua. Safe travel and do write when you can.

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    1. Thanks, Penny. I will definitely be blogging more than I did in summer, as there will be no gardening or family visitors to distract me and the scenery is so wonderful that I love to share it.:-)

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  18. Safe journey north Perpetua. Enjoy your knitting & the views from your fireside. Maybe see you on your journey south & west if you travel via DMinlaw

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    1. Thanks, PolkaDot. Packing almost complete now, so we'll be off tomorrow. I'm afraid we won't be going anywhere near dear MiL on the way back, as that would be a very big detour. However we will be spending Christmas with DS, so perhaps then?

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  19. Dear Perpetua, just wanted you to know that I prepared a lovely soup the other night for company: Tortellini with a dash of nutmeg. So delicious. Now it's time to start baking again for there's nip and chill in the air. Do you bake?

    I wish you a safe journey to Scotland and look forward to your postings from there. Peace.

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    1. Thanks, Dee. I will certainly have plenty of thinking time on the way there. :-)

      Your soup sounds delicious and it is certainly the weather for soup here in the UK. Yes, I bake, and make bread in my machine all year round, though, as I blogged earlier, I don't like this machine as much as the old one.

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  20. Have a wonderful time! The highlands are so beautiful.

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    1. Hello Lucy, and thanks. How nice to see you here. :-) Yes, the Highlands are uniquely beautiful and we love our time there.

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  21. Have a safe journey. I've only ever been to the Highlands once, as a teenager. I went swimming in a stream at dusk on the first evening and got covered from head to toe in midge bites and spent the rest of the holiday in utter misery. I've never been back, but now I've been invited by friends to stay with them near Ullapool next year, so I'll be reading your posts about Scotland with special interest.

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    1. Thanks, Pueblo Girl. I can well imagine that a covering of midge bites would be enough to put you off the Highlands for a long time. The misery of midges is the main reason why we always visit Scotland in spring and autumn, when the horrible little things aren't around.

      The area around Ullapool is truly gorgeous, so you have a lot to look forward to, but don't forget your midge repellent if you go in summer. Actually, spring is a great time to visit the West Highlands, as it tends not to rain so much then.

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  22. OOoh enjoy your trip North - I know you will. And I also know you will be well prepared for the climate. Look forward to hearing about your Autumn visit..... and when Irene and I chat about you, you are forever known as "Perpetua"! LOL!

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    1. We've arrived safely, thanks, Sian, and I've already unpacked all the sweaters and other woolly clothing. Ever since the unforgettable autumn visit when I forgot the hats and scarves, we've been ultra-careful about the packing. :-)

      I love the fact that I now have a second name, my parents having unaccountably omitted to give me more than one. :-)

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  23. Travel safely and have an enjoyable trip too :)

    I chanced upon your blog and I was wondering if you'd like us to follow each other? Take care :)

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    1. Thank you, Farida, and welcome to my blog. Once I've finished unpacking and sorting everything out, I will enjoy returning your visit.

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  24. I'll follow your Highland sojourn with interest. I've never been to the Highlands, despite ancestry rooted hear Arisaig and the Isles close by. The luxury of driving from one fabulous landscape to another is one to which I look forward in retirement.(18 months, but who's counting?)

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    1. I bet you're crossing the days off on your calendar, Pondside. :-) Once you're a lady of leisure, you really must follow your Highland roots and explore this most beautiful and unspoiled of areas. DH and I didn't discover the Highlands until we were both retired, but now they have a deep hold on our imaginations and emotions.

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  25. Safe travels and enjoy that superb scenery out on your doorstep. Hopefully without too much of the Baltic weather currently blowing down from the north!

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    1. We will, Niall and Antoinette, we always do. We arrived in the dark yesterday, so had the wonderful thrill of drawing back the bedroom curtains this morning to see the Kyle and Ben Loyal in all their splendour. One could never tire of it, whatever the temperature....

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  26. What a wonderful destination. I know you'll spend good time with friends as well as catch up on your knitting projects, but I'll look forward to hearing more adventures from the Highlands! You do travel into some really beautiful locations, Perpetua. Share photos! :-)

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    1. It is glorious, Debra, and I love being able to share even a little of its glory in my posts. We've spent today unpacking and sorting, Tomorrow it's forecast to rain rather a lot, and on Wednesday I have my knitting group, but after that we hope to be able to get out and about a bit.

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    1. We did, thanks, Linda, as the oad up through the Highlands is so very beautiful.

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  28. Thanks for giving me a whiff of Autumn. Being surrounded by pine trees, I don't get to see any russet. Safe journey.

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    1. You're very welcome, BtoB. Pine trees are nice, but my favourites are always the deciduous trees. The journey was great, thanks.

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  29. Trusting that you & DH arrive safely & look forward to new posts once you've settled in.

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    1. We did, thanks, Ricky, after a very long drive yesterday. It being Sunday, we made such good time up from Lancashire where we spent the night, that we decided to push on instead of camping overnight and thus gained a day. :-)

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  30. Wrap up warm, stock up on warm food and don't forget your spurtle!! Have a wonderful time.

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    1. We always have to wrap up warm, Catriona, as our Welsh house is old and hard to heat. We are fully stocked up with food and had soup for lunch (!) and having just googled "spurtle", I now know what to put into DH's Christmas stocking. :-)

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  31. Safe journey and enjoy your trip up north. I think Scotland is best in the spring and autumn, when the light is at its best

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    1. Thanks, Mark. I do agree with you about the light and the colours. It was mainly grey and damp as we drove up on Sunday, but the Lake District, the Scottish Borders and the Highlands still managed to look magnificent.

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  32. Greetings Perpetua,
    Scotland? I can only heave a big sigh. It must be stunning there, anytime of the year. Interestingly, I've been reading a lot of Thomas Hardy lately. I don't think he's Scottish, but his detailed descriptions of the countryside fascinate me.

    Thank you for commenting on my blog. You know, I will retire June 2014, and am counting down the months. I will soon join the ranks of other retired librarians. In the meantime, I am working in a new building and am on a very steep learning curve. This is why I've neglected my poor Nan Blog...I maintain a work-related blog which takes up my time.

    Enjoy your holiday. (hugs)

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    1. Thanks, Nerima,and lovely to hear from you. I'm so glad you escaped the dreadful destruction in New York, but sorry to hear you'v been so very busy. I bet you can hardly wait to retire.

      Scotland is truly stunning, especially the Highlands. Thomas Hardy was writing about a very different part of the British Isles, the south-west of England, but as you say, he described the countryside in loving detail.

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  33. I'd happily make an autumnal trip north if opportunity allowed so I for one think you're the sensible creature! Have a wonderful time. Maybe during quiet evenings by the fire you can write some more posts like your last which I thoroughly enjoyed :D

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    1. Thanks for the support, Annie. :-) A lot of people think we are quite mad to make such a long journey at this time of year, but we really love it here.

      Interesting that you should mention quiet evenings by the fire. It gets dark so early up here that the evenings are long and I'm already working on another post from the past. I think autumn must be conducive to nostalgia. :D

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  34. Dear Perpetua, my mantra has always been "When in doubt, cook." And the storm along the East Coast has stunned me and most people here in the United States. I live in the middle of the country, but we are all united. One.

    So today, aware of all those back east who have no electricity or heat, I felt compelled to try a new recipe.
    The soup I made--potato, leek, and cheese with dry mustard and cracked pepper turned out to be delicious. Let me know if you'd like the recipe. Peace.

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    1. Dee I have been watching events on the east coast unfold with horror and am only glad that the loss of life wasn't worse. The destruction must be heartbreaking for those concerned.

      Your soup sounds delicious and I would love to have the recipe, either on here or by email. Many thanks in anticipation.

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I welcome your comments and will always try to respond to them. Thank you for reading.