Never mind the rain
One of the concerns that I had in the back of my mind when making the decision to base Narwhal and ourselves in Scotland for the summer was, 'what if the weather is completely awful'. I’m not too bothered about the heat, I find it quite nice to need to wear a cosy jumper but I do like to feel the sun on my face from time to time. Our introduction to Scotland was stunning, with glorious blue skies and amazing visibility making the world look like it had high definition switched on. Then it started raining, and raining and raining. The sort of rain that requires a coat and waterproof trousers just to dash to your car. 5, 6, 7 days later it was still raining. Optimistically I listened to the weather forecast to hear ‘highs of 35 degrees’, ‘un-precendented UV levels’, ’the hottest June day for 40 yrs’, yes England was experiencing the ‘longest heatwave’. Each forecast of summer-time, beach and BBQ joy ending with the qualification 'except in north west Scotland where there will be rain’. Obviously many places are hotter and sunnier than Scotland, I would have had no qualms about hearing how it was 35 degrees in the Med but this felt so close that I could almost touch it, but still a million miles away. Day 8 of continuous rain rolled into day 9, but at last there was a change, the rain wasn’t accompanied by howling winds. This seemed like a good opportunity go get out in my kayak. I donned my drysuit, slid my kayak off Narwhal’s deck and headed out into the drizzle. I paddled over to some rocks and looked down into the calm, crystal clear water. There was starfish clinging to the jumbled rocks, I paddled a bit further and there were a group of bright pink sea urchins. each boulder rounded revealed a new aquatic delight. Time drifted away as I paddled around the beautiful rock islands, with the moody looking Sound of Jura lurking in the clouds. It was great, I was outside, enjoying the elements, I wasn’t too hot (despite the drysuit), I didn’t need to worry about covering up to avoid getting burnt. I realised that it wasn’t just rain plastering my face, but a great big smile.