A Weekend of Frozen Adventures

I think we can all agree that winter is now well and truly with us. But, on the plus side, it’s now CHRISTMAS TIME!!!!!!!!!

I’ve ditched my “It’s not even sodding December yet!” hat and replaced it with one of festive excitement and (bad) singing.

This weekend I definitely got well and truly into the festive spirit, and then promptly got back out of it by attempting to do some Christmas shopping. However, with a mince pie in hand and the Michael Bublé Christmas album on in the background I’m getting back into the mood.

Frosty leaves on atree trunkI went on a bit of an adventure on Saturday up to Perthshire, to go visit my great uncle. I don’t get up nearly as often as I’d like, but when I get the chance, I don’t hesitate on breaking free of the city and head of to more rural lands; so with the dog in the backseat we headed up the A9 for a day out. This is where most of my festive spirit came through – it was beautifully crisp and clear day, and the hills were all dusted with frost and snow. With the Christmas music drowning out my tuneless singing it was hard not to wish it was the 25th already.dog looking at river

To give her Majesty a bit of a walk I stopped off at The Hermitage, near Dunkeld. This turned out to be both a lot of fun and a bit precarious as it was, for the most part, a large ice rink. Keira had a whale of a time, of course, and I only had one unscheduled sit down, so I would definitely call the walk a success. It also gave me plenty of opportunity to take photos of frosty things. I don’t know why I’m so fascinated by them, but each time I’m out and about I end up taking more photos of them.

Once I’d ditched the boots we headed off to the village of Blair Atholl for a few hours of coffee, cake and chat (he still thinks I’m slightly nuts for going to Moscow, but we put pretty much everything else in the world to rights and I learnt a lot about Burma during the second world war). By the time we got round to leaving it was pitch black, but we were just in time to make a quick visit to one of my favourite shops – The House of Bruar. Whilst I would love many of the jackets and boots they sell there my salary doesn’t quite cover it, so I made do with a visit to the foodhall. On the somewhat transparent excuse of ‘looking for Christmas presents’ I managed to come out with some roast duck pâté, claret-infused cheddar and some honey and whisky smoked salmon. Definitely the best shopping I’ve managed so far, and definintely not one I’m keen on sharing. Our drive home was pretty uneventful, but I can confirm that my singing abilities did not improve.

Front of Edinburgh CastleSunday was another bright and early start, but this time to make use of my free Historic Scotland weekend pass and go have an up-close look at Edinburgh Castle. I only discovered last year that Historic Scotland do this pass each year on a weekend around St Andrews day, but some friends and I decided to monopolise on their good will and take a look at the most famous landmark in Edinburgh. Very little has changed since I went last year, which I guess isn’t hugely surprising but it was a lovely morning to stare at every horizon. One thing I did observe though, is that people are rather dim and were definitely waiting for the One O’Clock Gun to be fired, despite the large sign that says that it isn’t fired on a Sunday.

After our trip to the Castle I went on an unsuccessful attempt to buy others presents and have established that I am not a fan of festive shoppers. I am also very disappointed in the selection of Christmas jumpers on offer! Even the Jeremy Kyle recruitment centre (aka Primark), which has many in its window, couldn’t provide me with something for the office party. And even more upsetting, Whittards had sold out of Mulled Wine tea! I did get an orange and cinnamon rooibos, but it was the icing on the cake of a spectacularly bad (even by my standards) shipping trip. Time for mulled wine and Amazon shopping, I think.

Click on one of the photos below to see the slide show.


4 thoughts on “A Weekend of Frozen Adventures

  1. Frost-covered anything is stunning. It’s like heightened reality, and yet at the same time it’s hard to believe it all occurs naturally. You’ve got some super pictures there, it shows how much difference the weather makes to getting a great shot.

    House of Bruar is pretty amazing in its way. Last time I went I was sorely tempted by lumps of honeycomb. Smoked salmon and roast duck paste (can’t get the accent, but paste is what it is)? Phwooar. I’d love a proper tweed jacket too, preferably in a men’s cut which is far more flattering than women’s, but that is probably never happening *sigh*.

    Have you tried eBay for festive jumpers? I’m sure I’ve seen some on there. (I try to avoid buying from such places on principle, but no-one can keep that up all the time.) Also, you might find some nice foodie things at John Lewis, though when I looked their website didn’t seem to have as good a selection as last year. No-one’s getting me up to Princes Street now, unless I have a full day to wander around. I like the Christmassy bit, but trawling through the chain stores on a desperate quest for… something… is a day from hell.

    • It is true, frost does heighten everything. Although I’m wondering what you’re trying to say about my normal photos! (I’m only joking, I know exactly what you mean).
      Whilst it might never happen I personally don’t see anything wrong with a little day dreaming. I did look at the honeycomb, then got distracted by the smoke salmon. Priorities and all that…
      I got my other Christmas jumper from Ebay last year, so yeah it’s definitely the place to avoid the crowds. I don’t normally frequent such places, but they had lots of fun jumpers in the window. I wasn’t impressed when I went into John Lewis yesterday, but as you couldn’t move for all the people I doubt I’d have been impressed by anything! It is utterly hellish. I might do the odd bit at a lunch time (that being the advantage of working in town), but the only time I wish to be in town now is if Gluhwein or mulled cider is involved!

      • Heh. That does look quite rude now I read it back.

        Busy department stores are a whole other level for me in terms of stressful shopping. Most places it’s just impossible to move or see past people, but when you’re also trying to negotiate your way between stands that are mostly covered in items that are both breakable and expensive it adds an uncomfortable element of social and financial jeopardy. I was considering John Lewis, possibly online, for Christmas presents this year, but chickened out in the end and just put in a big Lush order instead. Unimaginative, yes, but it’s December, which means decisions must be taken. Onto making Christmas food now, which is much more pleasant. I hope your Christmas cake is coming along alright.

  2. Pingback: Instagrammers Anonymous: Tied to the Kitchen & Boxes | What do you see when you stare out the window?

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