Pitlochry Golf Course

From the second tee...

From the second tee...

Played and survived.

What a different experience of playing a “short course”. Hmmm. The first three holes are not only a test of your golf skills but of your fitness levels. As you stand on the first tee, little do you  realise as you look up the hill that you’re actually heading up…up…and up again.

The 5th is a challenge…at first it looks like a straightfoward hole until you realise that the pin is about 30ft above you on a raised platform… The elevated 6th tee has amazing views of the valley below, the Atholl Palace hotel and the rest of the hole. And it’s pretty much the same as your round progresses – stunning views, uncompromising golf, and immaculate grounds. Advice from the locals – push on through the first three holes to settle into an easier pace on the way around and always take a club longer than you think you need…

Golf buggies are not allowed on the course as it’s too steep! But, if you have a Powakaddy or something similar, it’s definitely worth the effort to take it! If not, speak to Mark (the Pro) in the shop and hire one of those on offer.

Stop for a bite to eat at the restaurant and enjoy the views of the first tee and the 18th hole as you do. Spectacular golf course! Challenging golf!

http://www.pitlochrygolf.co.uk/home.php

Rafting

At the weekend we asked about the possibility of rafting down the Tummel with my wee sister’s boyfriend. Before we could say “is it a good idea?” a raft was booked and we were set to paddle down the Tummel the next day.

Mum, Gran and cousin J, sat on the riverbank – watching the river as we went up to the dam to get in the boat. Wow! Four rafts in a row – we paddled our way down the river under the expert guidance of our instructor – Iain. What an experience. Not a huge amount of “white water” but a brilliant taster of what it would be like if more water were coming down from the top…

The final drop in the river is great. Iain guides the boat with ease (seemingly) while we do as we’re told to get the right line over the top and down the drop to the pool at the bottom. The four boats wait so that the guides can ensure the safety of all the other boats going over the falls and those of us at the bottom get to watch what’s happening (and see people’s faces as they splash down into the pool below). Fantastic experience, exhilarating trip!

Want to do it? Check out

www.naelimits.co.uk – rafting in Scotland on the river Tummel – but also the Orchy, the Tay and various other activities. (I really want to canyoning down the upper and lower Bruar).

Quality of Life

It’s a big thing, isn’t it?

My mother is carer to my grandmother and has been since Gran’s health deteriorated a couple of years ago. Gran, on her good days, has a sharp wit, is unbelievably funny and has a wicked sense of humour that makes us grandkids turn our heads. On her bad days, it’s awful. She doesn’t remember who we are, where she is or even what day it is. Her health is failing and it’s hard to see. We’ve always believed that Gran is better off living with the family than in a home, but this weekend, that’s been called into question and it’s shaken us all to the very core.

What quality of life does Gran have? What quality of life does Mum have? And, what about Dad?

At what point do you have to face the question of what’s best for all of you? And, how do you make that decision? My sister and I know that if Gran has to have 24/7 care that Mum will feel guilty she’s not the one doing it, yet, Mum will kill herself trying to do everything.

This weekend gone, Gran had another bad seizure and because she forgets things then tried to get up and carry on like nothing had happened – resulting in a fall. She’s in hospital now. The nurses are seeing first hand how difficult life is for Gran and for Mum.

None of us know what will happen just now. We’re waiting for test results and Doctor’s reports – but whatever it is, has to be a “better quality of life” for all.

Fingers crossed.