It’s just a chilled day of enjoyment in the mountains, pushing my pace, feeling my leg muscles come back stronger and stronger, more and more. My chest is beginning to feel better. Recovery is well under way and I’m becoming more excited for upcoming projects, to throw myself back into shooting again.
The sky is becoming a little less blue, minute by minute, as the vibe from bluebird day begins to change. As we head down the clouds begin to roll in, whipping up the snow around us and pushing us sideways as we head back down to the car park, the view of Loch Morlich still visible through dancing powder. I’m thinking about food, and a shower, and how much fun I’ve had.
I’m already finding it hard not to stop and take some photos. But I ration myself, heading up and up past a guide and his group pitching the gully and a couple pitching and simul-climbing. Occasional ice rains down on me, bouncing off my helmet and creating some small bruises on my thumb and inner thigh. I’m ahead so I shield Michael from the worst of it.
It’s been quite a while since I’ve genuinely felt so immersed in something. Even when shooting other things, I’m worrying about other things and I find it pretty hard to switch off these days, though going into the New Year I’ve really been working on it. But I really did find myself totally in the moment here. Feeling the cold and concentrating on the shots.
Michael falls asleep at about half past seven. I doze and wake and doze and wake. I’m pretty sure I heard a ghost at one point but it was probably the wind. I wonder whether I’d feel comfortable staying in a bothy alone. I’m unsure. I’ll stay in the van alone, I’ll camp alone, I’ll bivvy alone. But part of me wonders whether staying in a bothy alone would be too much for me. Ghosts or no ghosts.
Every time I think I’ve settled into some kind of acceptance about being at home, about missing the winter season, the hills, (the suffering!), the specific kind of creativity that comes with looking through a viewfinder at a wild landscape, I’m then thrown back out of that acceptance.
On the 1st, we woke up to quiet. It was still dark when we stumbled around the little cottage, gathering our things and hoping for, finally, a beautiful dawn.
You know when a simple comment leads to an adventure you didn’t quite expect?