Slow Forward on the Hebrides (2)


Neither am I seeking near death experiences in the arctic, nor do I aim to impress potential sponsors with record achievements and I certainly have no intention to be the first who hopped around Mount Everst in a handstand. So, what am I seeking?

It is experiencing, enjoying and marveling at nature, as simple as that. To let things happen rather than enforce them by planning. To let myself be surprised rather than pursue my expectations.

Now, how difficult can that be, right?

Had a coaching client a similar issue I would probably recommend that they travel to the most enigmatic photo location they can think of, wait for the best light and then leave their camera in their backpack, just sit there, shut up and…nothing else.

And myself? As embarrassing as it is to admit it: I lack the courage. Must make most efficient use of the moment! Can’t waste this opportunity! And so on.

Lucky for me, my partner is much more mature in this than I am: she can sit for hours  just looking out at the sea enjoying the scenery, whilst I am hysterically fiddling with my gear to capture “that moment”. All the while not realizing that a seal is watching me curiously from just a few meters away, probably wondering what on earth this weird creature is doing. Of course I did not end up with some photographic masterpiece, not even close, but a broken lens, bruises and something to think about.

Aside from the above mentioned embarrassment, though, I think I managed quite well on this journey overall. For our trekking tour via MacLeod’s Maidens to MacLeod’s Tables the guide book estimates 9 hours walking time – we took two full days. Not really an award-worthy achievement, but we will never forget our camping spot directly at the cliff’s edge overseeing the bizarre rock needles. Or the whale, that we were lucky enough to observe while having breakfast as it was slowly, majestically moving across the bay. We should learn from him! Which is exactly what we did: on our second day through Cuir Mór towards MacLeod‘s Table South (gaelic: Healabhal Beag, try this) the unexpected heat burned away most of our water supplies, so we decided that this “mountain” (488m – hey, we are from Austria!) was best viewed from below and therefore hiked back towards Orbost farm, where we started from. Back in our camper van a can of ravioli has never tasted better!

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