Willie’s View: A Cold Start to 2021

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In this week’s Willie’s View, “The People’s Friend” travel writer Willie Shand takes a chilly walk to start the New Year.

Happy New Year! Well, let’s hope a happier year lies ahead. At least January has started on a brighter note, with one or two sunny but cold and frosty days. You certainly had to watch your step today, with the ground frozen hard and the road covered in black ice. Maye that’s why I didn’t meet anyone else.

With no ceilidhs or concerts to go to; no dances or first footing and little to make up for it on the television, you could say the auld year departed “not with a bang, but with a whimper”.

Some might see 2020 as a year to forget but, looking back, it hasn’t been all bad. I had some fantastic days in perfect isolation – on Mount Blair; in the Menteith Hills; on a trek round by Whitefield Castle; into Glen Tilt and plenty of jaunts closer to home on the hills and byways of Kinross-shire.

I quite enjoyed spending more time exploring the local hills, dusting off the push bike and getting back into painting and music. The garden had never had so much attention and, with less traffic on the road, even the wee birds seemed to be singing more cheerfully. If there’s one thing 2020 has taught us, it’s that we shouldn’t take anything for granted.

Anyway, despite temperatures dipping to -4°C this morning, and having to waddle much of the way like a wee duck over the ice, this was just a grand day to be out for the first decent walk of the New Year.

For more from our Willie’s View series, click the tag below.

Looking for travel inspiration? Click here for some fascinating destinations you can try following the conclusion of the latest lockdown.

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Willie Shand