Giving hospitality…

sgath an tighe

We have had a house full of (paying) guest over the past week- here for the Cowal Highland Gathering.

Highland Dancers from Newcastle.

A family of highly creative folk from France and London, including a jazz musician, an opera singer and a life model.

Michaela and I cooked 31 cooked breakfasts (once at 6am!) cleaned constantly, changed bedding every third day, and in the middle had time to do some pottery, some wood carving and bits of socialising. It has been a busy hectic week, but we have both enjoyed it enormously. It helped that our guests were so lovely of course, but just the process of welcoming others into our space with other people is such a simple pleasurable act.

Michaela in particular is really good at those little touches that make people feel that special effort has been made- place mats with hand lettered quotes, suggestions of places to go and things to do, etc etc. Mostly (particularly in the morning) I kept out of the way and worked in the kitchen. On one occasion whilst delivering some toast I was accused of sending it sliding down the table western bar style- with no small amount of elan I thought!

Weekends like this when the house is so full gives hope for the future of our mixed economy way of making a living. It will always be marginal, and Cowal Games comes but once a year, but it kind of fits with who we are.

This week an old friend from Bolton is using the Annex- I have not seen her for 10 years and it will be lovely to catch up with her news.

Our big old house is a demanding old aunt, but at last it feels like she has softened into genial old age…

Come and see for yourselves!