Corrour Station.

The two carriage train starts its long climb. A horseshoe bend, over vaiduct, up and up, over Rannoch Moor, over lochan and bog, lochan and bog, lochan and bog. The conductor tidies the reservation tickets on the backs of the seats, aligning, squaring, til all is ship shape or train shape. He says the rain has been indescribable these past few weeks……’I would say have a good day…….’ We quietly slow and draw to a gentle stop at our destination – Corrour Station – the highest in the UK. No roads for many miles, the middle of nowhere. Clouds shudder, sharp, gusty winds yelp across the heather, moss, lichen and bilberry – tea stained russet, topaz and garnet as far as the eye can see. And water. It pools, trickles, settles and sinks this place. The sky empties yet more sobbing rain to replenish the great rivers. Here is the centre of it all, the highest. It’s all downhill from here. Things can only get wetter, and they do, yet for the briefest of moments a candle flicker of sun lights the tops of the snow covered hills in the north. In the signal box, our sitting room for our stay, watching the light fade from the day, the final train pulls in but no one gets off. The glow of the platfrom lights streaks rain like a scratchy black and white noir film scene with a score of a rising, roaring wind. Beyond the platform the world has receded to my own reflection in the signal box window, the moor has simply disappeared. It is an act of faith to think it will return. Perhaps it will come with the Sleeper train from London. Nothing to do but wait. It is wild out there.

Fishdock bridge Dundee.

Skeletal, sculptural forms of giant hogweed forest the embankment, signs warning of their danger. A lonely lozenge of a traffic island looks out onto the oil refinery whose octane scent drifts up and over the railway to the dead sailors in the small cemetery on the hillside above. We walk along the ports perimeter fence past giants bones of turbine towers and blades awaiting collection. Stacked high and wide along the river’s edge, their destiny to birl in montrous North sea winds. A rip in the cloud reveals a ships sail of blue sky high above the city.