This past weekend, Terry and I were lucky enough to be the guests of Hilton Hotels, at their beautiful Dunkeld House, in Perthshire. Which, OK, isn’t quite the “Highland Fling” of my title, but meh, close enough.
Perthshire is an area we’ve visited a few times in the last couple of years, and it’s a particularly beautiful part of the country, which is only about a 90 minute drive from home, so we were more than happy to be able to see a little bit more of the area. We’ve previously visited Glamis Castle and Blair Castle, but we’d never been to Dunkeld, and we were both instantly charmed by it: it’s one of those picture perfect little villages, from which you could remove the cars and other modern touches and feel like you were on the set of a period drama or something.
I could say the same of Dunkeld House itself, actually. It’s one of those old country houses, set on its own rambling estate, and the giant stone archway you drive under to get to it provides a good clue as to what you’re in for, which is basically a Downton Abbey-meets-Monarch of the Glen” kind of experience. Awesome, right?
Unfortunately, our visit was a fleeting one, so we didn’t have time to check out the pool and spa (This was probably just as well, because Terry couldn’t find his swimming trunks before we left, and it wasn’t exactly a “swim in your underwear” kind of joint…), but we did take full advantage of the opportunity to just relax and switch our heads off for a while. Well, Terry did. My head is almost ALWAYS switched off, as you know, but the fact is, we’ve had a kind of rough start to the year, for one reason and another, and the past few weeks have been particularly stressful, so the chance to just relax and not worry about anything for a while couldn’t have come at a better time. It took me around an hour to get used to the fact that I was actually allowed to use the towels in the bathroom, and to ruffle up the bedsheets if I wanted to (I was joking about the “basket of kittens” thing in my last post – well, sort of – but our house is currently being kept in a constant state of readiness for viewers, which means our bathroom towels are of the “just for show” variety, and when we want to actually dry ourselves, we just use an old rag or something…) (I’m joking, we don’t use the bathroom at all, for fear of messing it up. And we sleep in the car now.), but after that it was all good.
As soon as we checked in, I unpacked my overnight bag, so I could find out which essential items I’d forgotten THIS TIME. There were three missing items on this trip, namely:
1. My toothbrush
2. Its close friend and partner, the toothpaste
3. That top that was a pivotal part of the outfit I’d planned for Sunday, and the absence of which is the reason you will only be subjected to three sets of outfit photos rather than four from this trip. Because yes, I managed to change three times in less than 24 hours. You didn’t really expect any less from me, did you?
Once I’d established what I’d forgotten I called down to reception. “Hi!” I said, “It’s the over-dressed redhead who just checked in. You couldn’t send me up a couple of toothbrushes [Terry had forgotten his, too. We suck at packing, seriously.], some toothpaste, and also a black bardot style top, kinda 50s-inspired, would look great with a kicky little silk scarf? You know the kind of thing? Thanks!”
And you know, not five minutes later, someone was at the door with the two toothbrushes and toothpaste. They couldn’t help with the top, but that’s because I didn’t actually say that last bit, obviously. In fact, I didn’t say anything at all: I made Terry phone them instead. I don’t DO phones.
With that little bit of business out of the way, then, we were ready to start with the relaxin’. But that, my friends, is another story for another day, so you’re going to have to tune in later this week for the next thrilling instalment of What Amber Did That One Time She Went to Dunkeld. Assuming you can stand the suspense, obviously…
P.S. If you CAN stand the suspense and stick with me through another couple of posts, I promise to make it worth your while, by giving away a £100 Hilton Hotels voucher on Friday. Deal?
[Disclosure: We stayed at Dunkeld House compliments of Hilton Hotels. All opinions and random acts of stupidity are my own.]