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Rough Winds Do Shake


The last few days have seen some exciting weather at North Ballaird (chez Oellermann, to the uninitiated). Although it's usually fairly breezy around these parts, of late we have been lashed with gale-force winds: sometimes driving rain at relativistic velocities, sometimes producing such optical clarity that we seem able to pick stars like pebbles from a burn, turning them over to grok with their glinting, before tossing them idly aside (this last affects the local cattle profoundly; apparently they are unused to the attendant gravitational and thermal effects).

I seem to digress. The point is, it's been windy: we are lashed by a cat'o'nine'tails braided from the edges of Hurricanes Gordon and the other one (that'd be a cat'o'nine'tails which had already used up seven of its tails; perhaps due to the aforementioned gravitational side-effects there are some quantum distortions; if you like, a Schroedinger's cat'o'nine'tails, which is contemporaneously in a state of having just the two tails). For we uninitiated, this has been a deliciously disturbing experience; the brain knows that those stone walls have been there for hundreds of years, but the gut is sure that they shouldn't be oscillating at that precise frequency. 

Still, with a fire in the grate and a little of Scotland's own life-giving elixir, the gentle clinking of the slates can be quite cozy, and the stark contrast with the outside reminds you of how fortunate you are. I am particularly glad not to be a sheep; they seem to have large surface areas, poor aerodynamics and relatively low mass: here's hoping we don't have a spate of ovine yuppies (upwardly-mobile, that is).


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