Tuesday, 22 August 2017


It's been a tough few weeks people. I ain't gonna lie. But last Saturday I awoke with a renewed vigour. Something inside me felt a bit more positive. The idea of facing the world didn't make me want to dive back under the covers. There was a slight spring in my step & the tiniest hint of the spark returning to my eye. When I got out of the shower I put my make-up on and for the first time in weeks it did what it was supposed to do. It made me look better. 

Vainly the way I look is something I struggled with a lot over the past month or so. I was convinced that the pain I had felt was etched all over my face. Plastered on me like branding for the whole world to see. When I looked in the mirror I saw someone who looked incredibly tired. When I looked at photos I saw the eyes of someone who was going through a process. Both physically and mentally. Who wanted the exhaustion to just go away.

But last Saturday I started to look much more like my old self. I started to look happy. And I started to feel it too. My age old hippy ideas of positive thinking and the laws of attraction came flooding back. I started to remember that there was a happy future out there for me, outside of what had happened. I reminded myself that I had just had a shit month. But that time would heal. The scars would fade. And that there was a tonne of exciting stuff probably just waiting around the corner for me.

It seems to be working. Since I put on my happy face and tried to concentrate more on the positive, two awesome things have been put to me this week almost out of the blue. Both exciting. Both promising me a better future. So this gal is putting her happy face on for the foreseeable. It's the only way to go people.

By the time Sunday came around I was desperate to do the one thing that always soothes my soul. Escape the city. And that's exactly what Felicity and I did. I packed Ava off to her Dads, made my way west to collect a gorgeous face I hadn't seen properly since our night away in April, and we headed out of the city in the hunt of something that had been stuck on one of my many Pinterest lists for ages - Buchanan Castle.

We scooted along the motorway, gabbing way too much to indulge in any of the eighties classics we both readily adore, and made our way to the village of Drymen. We dumped the car in the carpark of the local hotel because obviously it has a bar and beer is mandatory after exploring, and we took off on foot to find my castle. 

Our hearts were happy, our mood was light, and our directions were completely shit. So to the silly woman who decided to use her excellent navigational skills to kindly give the rest of us directions on the Walkhighlands website - you really should be taken off the internet. Despite some rather dodgy directions, we did manage to find the old & dilapidated castle. And it was without a doubt one of the coolest castles yet.

But not before I made the legendary decision to divert us away from said castle and through some seriously muddy fields. Getting our feet rather muddy and wet as we nervously tried to avoid some rather heavy looking cows. Soz about that Flic. But taking directions from me is like asking Vanessa Feltz to talk you through Macronutrients. 

You'll learn.

The castle itself felt almost majestic. There was something fairy tale like about the way it had been left to rot. Something special in the way that nature had totally reclaimed it for herself. 

Originally built in 1850 for the Duke of Montrose, it became a hotel in 1925, before it was turned into a military hospital during the Second World War. Rumour has it that Rudolf Hess (Hitler's right hand guy), was treated there after his plane crashed in Scotland in 1941. Despite being largely ruined and taken over by an abundance of trees, plants & overgrowth, much of the castle still remains. One pointed tower still stands along with the remains of some of the stairwells. The great oval shaped castle door is still there. As is the grand old fireplace in the main room.

Apparently the roof of the castle was removed in 1954 to avoid paying tax on the building (great thinking lads) and from there it fell into total disrepair. Nowadays the castle grounds and the crumbling walls are covered in creeping plants and strange, wet lichen. I know because I screamed every time I touched a tree.

After a good hour of exploring and then a half an hour further trying to remember how to get out, we made our way to the pub and with muddy jeans and a twig or two in our hair we chatted over cold beer, prawn cocktail crisps and dry roasted nuts. That girl knows the way to my heart.

Upon our return to Glasgow we ingested as much Prosecco, roast chicken and Tiramisu as our belly's would allow us to hold. For most people, the buzz of a Friday or Saturday night is where it's at. But for me, a Sunday is my favourite day. It's the day Ava goes to her Dads and the day I get to do what makes me feel alive. Which is get the hell out of dodge.

Because somehow, over the past year or two, this outdoor hating, can't get my hair wet, don't come anywhere near me with bugs gal has actually got rather fond of old mother nature. And there is nothing that makes me breathe easier on a Sunday than some fresh air and some exploring. Be it a big old hill, a medieval Scottish castle or a nature trail. Just gimme a plan and I will be there. I'll even get muddy and not moan. 

I don't know what happened last Friday night when I went to bed. Maybe the feelings of loss and emptiness just finally had to run out. Maybe the old adage that 'time's a healer' finally came true. Maybe fairies sprinkled me with magic fucking fairy dust at 1am. Whatever it was, since Saturday I've just felt better. It's a good feeling and one that I plan to hold onto.

And how do I intend to do that? 

Lots of Sundays. Lots of castles. Lots of beer. Lots of exploring. Lots of dry roasted nuts. Lots of roast dinners. Lots of mud.

But no rain. 

I definitely draw the line at rain.


wholelottarosie said...

This is a beautifully written post, Dawn (as always). So pleased to hear you're feeling better too.

Dawn Young said...

Thank you! xx

last year's girl said...

Smiled all the way through this. You're some lass, Dawn. x

Dawn Young said...

I shall take that as a compliment ;-) xxx