Having left the boys (the cats Jack and Ollie) at home in the care of their temporary guardians, and with the dead certainty that there wouldn't be a massive rush on the new web emporium that is Elsie May and Bertha, my other half and I are on the second of our usual bi-annual visits to the Glengarry Castle Hotel.
Set on the shores of Loch Oich, and next to the ruined caste from where it gets its name, the hotel is our second home.
We normally come up at the end of May (for our wedding anniversary) and the end of October (for my birthday, unfortunately they're not open for the other half's birthday in November).
In May the rhododendrons fill the air with their heavy scent, the leaves are green on the trees and, if you're really unlucky, the midges venture out. Unfortunately, I attract these horrible little insects like bees to honey, and get bitten remorselessly, whereas the other half doesn't attract a single one and wonders what all the fuss is about.
Anyway back to nicer things - Scotland in May. The sun, more often than not, shines most of the time. In fact the weather can be a lot better up here than in the rest of the country. On the spring bank holiday this year it was gloriously sunny here, but in London it was pouring down with rain!
At the end of October, the trees turn into a multitude of different hues of red, gold, and brown. These are shown beautifully in the sun when the reds are high-lighted. And when its dull or raining the yellows and the darkness of the tree branches and trunks come to the fore. Another difference during the autumn is that when it's sunny you can see farther and more clearer, as you're not hindered by the heat haze of the warmer weather.
The Glengarry Castle Hotel itself is a great place to stay. Gorgeous rooms, great food and lovely staff. I'd recommend it to anyone.
Must finish now as there's a scone with my name on it awaiting.