|A panoramic view from the summit of Cairngorm Mountain in Scotland|
I spent a few days in the Lake District, my bike protected from the frequent rain by a heavy-duty cover I had bothered to strap to rack. I was up there for a conference, which somehow translated into walking up a mountain in the pissing cold rain and wind, followed by many pints of German lager. The second part I liked most, obviously, but in hindsight I enjoyed the first part, as well. It was one of the most fun work-related things I’ve ever been to. Next year’s conference is in the Broads and I am already planning my route.
|Your faithful correspondent at the summit of Cairngorm Mountain.|
On the motorway, the rain turned to hail at one point, which was less than pleasant, but I stayed dry. And huge love goes to the guys at Michelin for the Pilot Road 4 tires they gave me recently. Honestly, those tires are (so far) fantastic. They hold so well in torrential rain that I legitimately thought to myself at one point: “You know, when pondering which bike I want next, I may want to consider limiting my options to those bikes that can wear these tires.”
|Loch Morlich in Cairngorms National Park|
Traffic, too, had thinned to the sort of levels one might experience in farm areas surrounding a major US metropolitan area –– not so quiet that one could even begin to think about setting up a baseball game in the street, but sparse enough that I could maintain a steady speed for more than a minute. If one had such a feature he or she could almost –– almost –– consider clicking on cruise control. I have some very good friends who are originally from Scotland and they have long responded to my complaints of Britain’s crowded nature with suggestions that I visit the wide open spaces of their homeland. I suspect that if I were to take them to a place like Paint Rock, Texas, the sheer quiet and solitude of it would cause their minds to melt.
That night I ate dinner at The Bothy, a great local pub in the heart of Perth that sources many of its foods locally. I drank pints of Schiehallion, I struck up a long conversation with my waitress who said her boyfriend looked like Benedict Cumberbatch (she showed me pictures; he does) and felt thankful for the life I have. Then I went back to my hotel and sent rude texts to Jenn.
Some pictures from Scotland
|A field of bluebells I came across whilst walking in Battleby.|