Escape To The Scottish Highlands
Frightened by war and weary of Covid, I went in search of another world. I found it in the Scottish Highlands.
I was a 3-hour drive from my TV in Prestwick where the world seemed dominated by war, Covid and political indiscretion. In the silence and beauty of the Cromarty Firth in the Scottish Highlands at sunrise, I might as well have been on a different planet. I was certainly living a different life.
The newly risen sun coloured the sky hues of orange, purple and pale blue as it climbed above Fort George across the water. It laid a golden path back to the shore on which I sat. I could hear the rush of a brisk morning breeze which felt cold across my face. Somewhere the cry of a seagull, no doubt looking for fish, rose above the hiss of the sea breaking on the shore. I was looking for dolphins off Chanonry Point.
Chanonry point is a distinct peninsula which juts out into the waters of the Cromarty Firth beside the ancient town of Fortrose. Like so many places in Scotland, this place has its legends and history. It is said that a 17th Century fortune teller called the Brahan Seer lived and died near here. He was sentenced to a brutal execution for witchcraft by one Countess Isabella after accurately ‘seeing’ her husbands’ infidelities in Paris. In the hour of his death, he placed a curse of the countess’s family. They are said to have been plagued by various physical and mental afflictions for generations.
It was nature rather than history however which brought me here. Chanonry Point is one of the best places in Scotland to come and see wild dolphins. On a rising tide, the dolphins chase fish just meters from the shore. Though I hadn’t seen them this morning I had not been disappointed. I was treated to a spectacular showing the previous evening. At least 3 bottlenose dolphins dived and wheeled and leapt after fish literally meters in front of us for about an hour. The scene was wild, breath-taking, and spectacular.