Thinking in Queen Elizabeth Forest Park

August 09, 2015

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A couple of weekends ago, when the "summer" weather here in Scotland wasn't completely deplorable, Kami, Roxie and I bundled into the car with a picnic and headed out to Queen Elizabeth Forest Park in The Trossachs, near Aberfoyle. We had been wanting to do a bit more exploring for a while but nothing puts a dampener on your spirits that day after day of grey skies and rain showers. To be honest, this summer has been a bit of a bust in terms of getting out and about at all. Usually we spend our weekends taking Roxie on long walks, exploring towns and parks we've never been to before or lazing in the sunshine at our normal haunts but not this year. Oh no, the rubbish weather put a stop to those grand plans.

The best thing about getting out somewhere new and exploring is being able to get out of your own head for a little while. When I'm at home, cooped up inside with a million and one things I should be doing, need to do and want to do my head can end up a little bit... well, messy. Thoughts fly around my head, bouncing off each other and splitting into two more ideas or things that need done. I don't necessarily lead a particularly stressful life in the grand scheme of things but when I'm stuck inside my head for too long it all gets a bit overwhelming.

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Clearing my head works wonders for me. How can I spend time worrying about x needing done or y needing to be finished when I am surrounded by beautiful Scottish scenery? Daily stresses slip from the mind and the most complain-y thing I can think about is how sore my feet feel after stomping over uneven ground for the last hour and a half. Which honestly, if that was my only complaint on a daily basis I'd be more than happy.

As I shake the cobwebs from my mind, I feel as though I am actually able to appreciate the little, good things that I have in the here and now. I'll walk in stride with my very best friend in the whole world and be reminded just how lucky I am to have found him. I'll watch as Roxie follows one animal scent then another as she scampers side to side on the path in front of us and remember the joy that she brings to us every day. I'll listen to the complete silence around us, only our own voices, our steps to be heard and soak in the moments when there is no one else around to spoil my day. That feeling right there - that's happiness.
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I hope that as I age and life becomes far busier than I could ever have imagined that I'll always make time for getting out into the fresh air and exploring, weather permitting of course. I hope that when we do have a family of our own one day that our children will enjoy adventuring through new parks and places as much as we do. I hope that we have more opportunities to get out there soon. It's a big, old world and I want to see my part of it at the very least.

This was July's Date Challenge: To pack a picnic and go exploring.
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1 comment :

  1. I love exploring for this very reason, I like having all these things to engage my mind so everything else is just quiet. There's nothing better than getting out in the fresh air and looking at nature - to me at least. Even when everything has turned to shit and I'm stuck in a depression, just getting out for a little walk, is enough to allow me to breathe a little.

    I love nature. I love these photos too!


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