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Hi Donald and Friends -
Dalmally Church is beautiful. The square shaped clock tower with the
attached octagonal church is very unusual but beautifully positioned on its
small rise of land.
My gran and I parked in the parking lot of the church and had a wonderful
lunch of Scotch broth and soft rolls in the car as we watched the sheep in
the adjourning field. After lunch I scrambled up the hill and through the
gate in the stone wall to enter the cemetery. I only walked through the old
section - closest to the church.
My first impression of the church and cemetery is difficult to describe.
Immediately I felt overwhelming excitement and yet even more pronounced was
the deep sense of peace or balance that washed over me. Somehow I knew I
had "come home."
The air in Dalmally, to quote my gran, "is sweet" and combined with the soft
Scottish mist that was falling created an almost theatrical atmosphere.
February is a wonderful time to visit the Highlands if you are interested in
capturing a feeling of what it might have been like years past. The stark
form of the bare trees against the low hanging gray sky, the intense green
of the grass, the mounds of rust colored dead bracken and everything around
you water logged all combine with the beautiful clear air. Time stops.
Your senses are overcome with the rugged beauty of the land. I wanted to
taste the rain, listen to the "squish" of my shoes in the soft ground, touch
the moss covered stones, fill my lungs to capacity with the fresh cool air
and photograph all that I saw and do this all simultaneously.
Dalmally Church and cemetery is beautifully kept. Dunoon cemetery struggles
with an outrageous level of vandalism (and an apparent apathy to it.) There
was no evidence of such a problem in Dalmally.
The high gloss red double door is very welcoming.
Donald, all the stones in the old section face East - do you know why? I
have heard tales of "The Gates of Heaven always being open in the East."
Some stones would be easier to view if they were inscribed on the other
side. It is difficult to squeeze between the stone and the side of the
church when the stone is 6 inches from the building to read the inscription.
So there must be a very important reason for this.
For anyone visiting Scotland - Argyll is worth the visit. I thoroughly
enjoyed the Loch Awe area. Kilchurn Castle, at times described as gloomy,
has become my favorite piece of real estate. It is currently up for sale -
asking price - bids over 150,000 pounds. Worth every penny as far as I am
concerned. A group of Germans were looking at it while I was there.
Wordsworth was also impress with Kilchurn and wrote the following:
"Child of a loud-throated war, the mountain stream
Roars in thy hearing; but thy hour of rest
Is come, and thou art silent in thy age,
Save when the winds sweep by...
Personally I think Kilchurn and Loch Awe deserve a little more exciting
poetry - but hey I'm not Wordsworth.
Time to get on.
Have a great day.
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