Wednesday, June 19, 2013

A Vist to Findhorn

On our day off we decide to visit the Findhorn Village and Park.  We will be staying at the Park next week when we attend the conference but we wanted to get a feel for the place early.  It is about 7 Km from our house and our plan is to walk to Forres, the nearest town and catch the bus.  Unfortunately, we just miss the bus but it’s a beautiful sunny day in Forres so we decide to walk and explore the surrounding countryside as well. 

It is a beautiful walk, through vast open spaces covered in green grasses & yellow gorse with more than it’s fare share of sandstone mansions complete with beautifully manicured gardens in bloom.  We have about 3km to go when we hitch a ride with a Findhorn resident. 

Findhorn Park is a wonderful example of sustainable living at work.  The houses are built to a strict code set by the Findhorn association.  Green roofs, rainwater tanks and solar panels are everywhere.  The housing ranges from caravans to small mobile cabins and more substantial homes.  We were especially intrigued by the use of old whiskey barrels to build a very low cost round house!

We stop for coffee at the Blue Angel Café.  Residents and visitors alike are enjoying the sunshine and I get the sense that people are happy here.  A newspaper called Positive News, which I had picked up at Phoenix - the local shop, has aroused my curiosity.  I love the premise of this paper.  Published just once a quarter, their goal is to share positive stories from around the world.  I read that Scotland has been awarded Fare Trade Nation Status, that the UK has become more peaceful, that there is an economic miracle unfolding in Iceland and that Gay Rights are becoming more widely recognised around the world.  I am especially interested in the article about the simple lifestyle adopted by the President of Uruguay, who has decided to donate most of his wage to charity and has rejected the official vehicle allocated to him in favour of his more modest VW Beetle.  I particularly loved his response when he was dubbed the world’s poorest president.  This is what he said:  “I don’t feel poor.  Poor people are those that only work to try and keep an expensive lifestyle and always want more and more.”  How true.

I feel uplifted by the unusually warm weather (for Scotland this is probably a scorcher) and the positive news I have just read.  We press on for Findhorn Village, a few miles down the road.  We reach Findhorn Bay and marvel at the scene before us.  The landscape is wild and a little forlorn but also strangely beautiful.  We walk around the headland and stumble on the beach which stretches for miles…this is as beautiful as any of the northern beaches in Sydney except that the ocean is freezing and not even the Scots have braved the cold and put on their bathers! 

It’s time for lunch and Steve is craving protein.  The Crown and Anchor pub offer a mouth watering lamb shank but I find it hard to go past the fresh crab on offer.  We’ve had a wonderful day.  We explore the village a little more and spend the rest of the afternoon in the village café, downloading photos and chatting to the lady who ran the café…guess what – turns out she used to live in Adelaide!  Yes – we live in a truly global world today.  

"Look up a the stars and not down at your feet.  Be curious."  Stephen Hawking

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