Posted by: brigid benson | January 1, 2018

Music To My Soul!

 

My home made mini movie and just some of the places I find inspiration!  ❤️

 

Posted by: brigid benson | March 20, 2019

Aye Write Festival 2019

Central Station mosaic, Glasgow

To wonderful Glasgow, where I was invited be among the happy gathering of authors at a cultural highlight in the city’s year, the prestigious and vibrant book festival Aye Write.

It is always an honour to share my inspiration, images and insight with people seeking to discover more about my work and about the north west highlands of Scotland. It was a joy to be received so kindly at the mitchell Library venue by a lovely crowd, and always so special to hear questions, and stories of others’ experiences of the far north highlands.

I was especially touched by a teenage girl and her mum who are planning a journey together. And an older gentleman who told me he has such beautiful memories of his family traveling with a caravan on fiendish highland roads in the early 1950s.

He was moved to tears at the memory of the beach at Achmelvich, where he made sandcastles with his sister.

It is an honour to sign my latest book for those who queue in line so patiently, I am always deeply appreciative of that.

Having worked in professional theatre, I totally appreciate the huge behind the scenes efforts in hosting any kind of event such as this. The tech crews, the ushers, the ticket sales team, the book sales teams and the inspirational programme curators are all awesome and no festival happens without their passion!

So thank you for a great time Glasgow!

And in keeping with my own little tradition of a special treat at the end of every public appearance, this time I opted for a delicious hunk of cake over Earl grey tea with a friend at Patisserie Valerie on Glasgow Central station!

I am not a big cake eater yet when the mood takes me, I make it special!

The wonderful mosaic at Glasow’s Central station
Glasgow’s coat of arms celebrates the extraordinary achievements of the city’s patron saint, Mungo
Glasgow is among my favourite cities
This mural, seen from the train, explains why!
Posted by: brigid benson | March 7, 2019

Far From The Madding Crowd

A vibrant, charming, independent, award winning bookshop

To lovely Linlithgow, birthplace of Mary Queen of Scots, for a happy literary lunch hosted by Sally Pattle of Far From The Madding Crowd, an award winning independent bookshop of character.

The company was great. A sell out crowd savoured a tasty lunch at the vibrant Granary Cafe where owner Gillian creates delicious food, inspired by her grandmother who kept the community happily healthy at her whole food store!

Literary host Rebecca presented the event beautifully and invited me to share my insight and experience of Scotland’s highland landscape and communities and my work, especially my latest book North Coast Journey.

It is always an honour for me to attend bookish events, to hear questions about my work and other folks’ experiences of the highlands.

A small area of the glorious basement den of books for young readers and their adults!

Before leaving Linlithgow, I was honoured to accept Sally’s invitation to sign the visiting authors’ beam at her bookstore. I added a stag for good measure!

A wonderful day, and my thanks to all involved in creating the opportunity to gather and share together. I did miss my namesake BB though! The resident rabbit Bookshop Bunny, aka BB, joins children in the basement for reading sessions on Saturday mornings. How special!

Bookshop Bunny, a regular at Saturday morning events at Far From The Madding Crowd bookstore
Posted by: brigid benson | February 25, 2019

Gratitude!

The process of writing a book is immense and I very much appreciate feedback and reports of how my work has inspired others.

Here are a few lines from a terrific and generous review in The Scotsman newspaper. Sharing it with much gratitude!

North Coast Journey

Posted by: brigid benson | January 24, 2019

Winter’s Still Place

Winter crashes, freezes, howls and grips yet when she holds her chill breath, her gentle stillness is magical.

And in the damp, dank sanctuary where brittle branches dance with emerald moss and silver birch, profound stillness is most delicious soul food!

Posted by: brigid benson | December 31, 2018

Thanks 2018! Hello 2019!

As the year closes, here’s a lovely reflection that I came across in the Ullapool News, which circulates weekly to a small and scattered community on the west coast of Scotland.

Especially poignant are the lines social worker Andre du Plessis writes about the human experience, relationships and the importance of nurturing our relationships together to create enduring warmth and love in our lives. 

I read this while listening to a storm stomp around the house. The wind prowled and howled across the landscape, rain lashed the windows but they did nothing to dim the coals in the fireplace. The room was full of  soothing glowing light and reassuring warmth. It was cosy, it was beautiful and I filmed it because it felt so lovely to be held safe while the storm raged. In time it would pass, all part of nature’s rhythm.

So farewell 2018, and welcome 2019!

And may your fireplace warm your heart!

Posted by: brigid benson | December 11, 2018

Escape for a moment!

Here’s just a tiny flavour of extraordinary and magical far north Scottish highland places I invite you to discover and experience with my acclaimed new book North Coast Journey.

Discover fantastic people, vibrant communities, intriguing history, mouthwatering flavours and fresh food and characterful places to rest your head! There’s all of this and more!

Relax, dip in and be inspired!

Posted by: brigid benson | December 5, 2018

Inchnadamph Remembers

The road to Inchnadamph

The tiny highland settlement of Inchnadamph hosts a whitewashed church at the edge of a loch in the mountainous landscape of Assynt.

On the summit of nearby Ben Mor Assynt,  the young crew of an Avro Anson aircraft were killed when their plane crashed in poor weather on April 13 1941. The snow storm was so fierce the crash site was not easily discovered and the wreckage was reached by a shepherd some six weeks later. Ultimately the six man crew, from Scotland, England and South Africa, were buried on the mountain. A simple granite memorial was airlifted to the site in recent years to mark their mountain top graves.

Another memorial to the airman served prior to the more recent mountain memorial and this remains in the wall of the churchyard at Inchnadamph. On Remembrance Day local people – traditionally RAF cadets from Ullapool – place poppies at both sites, on the mountain and at the church.

The 1941 crash site is one of Britain’s most remote war graves. The site at the church is a more accessible way to honour the aircrew who lost their lives in the harsh and extended winter of 1941.

Posted by: brigid benson | November 30, 2018

Gathered In

Crofters on the west coast of Scotland are gathering in their sheep to put them to the ram. All around the townships are pens, or fanks, where the ewes are safely gathered in. Some are curious and wonder what’s going on! A happy few enjoy being stroked!

Posted by: brigid benson | November 25, 2018

Far from Black Friday!

Lochinver Winter Market

The hurly burly of congested shopping streets and frantic online festive purchases is not for me, much as I love to be in cities, towns and villages when they are aglow with sparkling lights.

But when it comes to buying meaningful gifts, I do love to visit markets where local people have created unique treasures, whether it’s an exquisitely crafted piece of jewellery or daffodil bulbs in a pot individually painted by the community group.

Among the other treasures at yesterday’s Lochinver Winter Market were hand knitted socks and fabulous jewellery made by Barbara Macleod

Barbara Macleod’s beautiful enamelled work

Another craftswoman showing her work was Clare Hawley 

Close by the fabulous jewellery were wondrous hand knitted socks!

Hand knitted traditional socks

Refreshments were great too; nourishing soup and spectacular homemade cakes. The tables were decorated with tartan cloths and homegrown flowers. A pot of jam awaited scones!

While people gathered in the cosy village hall, in the harbour beyond, fish was being unloaded from ships and into lorries for delivery to fish markets in Britain and Europe.

Posted by: brigid benson | November 24, 2018

Autumn gold in the northwest highlands of Scotland

The setting sun weaves a spell in the days of shortening autumn light.

The scenery is gilded and glowing; ancient, spectacular, joyful and peaceful!

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