This year, my birthday fell on a bank holiday weekend. A rare thing and, if I was still working, a rare treat to have the day off!
So, there was some pressure on me to a) visit my family for a family birthday celebration and b) plan a treat-filled weekend. Many times was the question asked of me ‘what do you want to do for your birthday?’ and the answer ‘just go out for a meal’ wasn’t enough.
My family live in the beautiful Aberdeenshire countryside and the weather forecast for the weekend was good so it made sense to get out and about. Saturday dawned bright and sunny so Baby Sis, Top Man and I went for a hike up the closest hill, Tap o’Noth, to a vitrified Pictish fort on the top for a picnic lunch with a view over a quarter of Scotland, so it’s said.
Next day, the weather was the same so we went to the sea, the shores of the Moray Firth at Sandend and walked the coastal path including a terrifying scramble to 15th century Findlater Castle. Bringing our historic visits forward by about one and a half millennia!
On the actual birthday, Baby Sis had to work as it isn’t a Scottish bank holiday although many companies do now recognise it. The weather threatened to close in around 14:00 and the plan was to hike up another local hill to Mither Tap o’Bennachie. So Top Man and I headed out and walked up the Maiden Causeway to another Pictish hill fort.
It’s hard to believe that these stone walls and steps have survived 2 millennia, at least, as well as the tramping hordes of 21st century tourists. Not only that, but the skills and knowledge was there to build them in the first place.
After sustenance at a local tea room, we headed back to my sister’s for hot showers and putting on glad rags for present opening and Prosecco. Somehow from here on, photos got forgotten. We toddled up the road to the local Indian and had a wonderful meal … bookended by walks there and back avoiding the rain!
A wonderful weekend, thank you everyone!