Wednesday 15th. January, 2014 – A Good Day 


Springfield House in Stirling where I attended a meeting of the Scottish Pilgrim Routes Forum today


Today has been a good day – that’s not just a platitude, it’s what my father used to say at the end of almost every day, and I remember him when I say it. It is amazing that one can say this almost every day, and it reminds me of how fortunate we are.

I got up early and Mix and I walked along the Swinton Road, happily waving to all the motorists and lorry drivers who share our morning ritual. Back in the farmhouse I breakfasted for the second day running on porridge and then went back to the Granary to print out the papers for the meeting I was to attend today. Washed and changed and discovered that, even in spite of two days of porridge, I have continued to put on weight . I will soon be on a no-food-at-all diet.

I set off for Stirling and had a very pleasant drive guided by my trusty Tom-tom, arriving in plenty of time at Springfield House for the management meeting of the Scottish Pilgrim Routes Forum. In fact, Luss was a founder member of the forum but now I attend as an associate (individual) member and in particular I am there to act as a link between the forum and the Green Pilgrimage Network.

I enjoyed the meeting enormously, from the sandwich lunch to meeting the members (all of whom I already knew) and working through the business. (I was very abstemious at lunch time, I promise.)

The forum is tackling some interesting projects – thinking through some form of accreditation for Pilgrim Paths, planning a road show to advertise its work, working with other bodies to establish new Pilgrim Paths and to support existing paths. Thought was also given to the second Pilgrim Gathering which will be held later in the year. It was good stuff and I enjoyed it enormously.

The meeting ended before four so I was able to drive back home in a leisurely fashion – just as well because the traffic on the Edinburgh ring road was really quite severe (in total contrast to my journey north this morning). What wonderful roads we have – I started thinking about the roads when I first learned to drive. I remember setting off from Dundee and driving to Southport to visit my Godmother (I was in an old Morris 8 which my father and I had constructed from three old cars. The roads were small and narrow but also there weren’t very many cars around, quite unlike today. I remember being stopped by a policeman who told me that my off-side brake light wasn’t functioning. ‘It was when I left home’, I told him – and it was too, because this was such an adventure that I had checked everything before setting off. The policeman’s response was to offer to have a look at it for me. Out came a screwdriver, the lamp cover was removed. The policeman smiled, removed an old-style three-penny-bit from his pocket and forced it between the bulb and the lamp spring. Immediately the lamp started to function again. ‘There you are,’ he said. ‘Take care’ and off he went and didn’t even ask for thruppence from me. Those were the days.

Back home, I got myself organised and chatted to the dog before dinner. My sister and Digger seemed to have spent the day doing a jigsaw and Rachel had been up to collect the glass for the front of the stove only to discover that the wrong size had been ordered. Never mind we will have it operational by the weekend.

Dined – it was good to be home after two days away, and then spent the evening in the Granary watching television and, as an old assistant of mine used to say, ‘chilling out’. We watched the final film of the Montalbano series (set in Sicily). It was very, very good. Once it was over there was just time to walk the dogs before bed. It has been a good day.

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