About 2 hours North of Edinburgh we drove into a natural, hazardous, Christmas Winter Wonderland. It is the one time when you can barely see the sheep in fields, since the fields are no longer defined by the variety of greens in their grasses. They are cloaked in snow. Each time a plump of snow was about to fall, the sky grew an ominous grey. Though not nightfall, natural light was dimmed. Visibility reduced. The world around us looked, at that stage, very uninviting.
We drove many miles behind a gritter/snow-plough, a large vehicle with powerful lights. Though a slow and majestic mover, the usual frustrations associated with sedate driving did not figure in the weather conditions that prevailed. A crawler lane for overtaking slow vehicles, literally was a crawl forward. Without the remains of a one car accident on the other carriageway, with emergency services still in attendance, it might have been possible to demurely overtake the snow-plough. As it was not possible, we stayed in file, behind it. I found it quite comforting.
At nightfall we were negotiating steep roads and hairpin bends, (shiny with a covering of ice) behind a vehicle with a heavily laden trailer; it was a peculiarly shaped load, possibly a kind of huge transformer together with some other heavy duty machinery. The vehicle almost came to a stop at the most sharp and steep part of the journey. We took deep breaths, kept our distance and trusted to hope. By staggered degrees of movement, the vehicle made its way onward and upward.
Magically, we gently moved through a vortex of falling snow. I imagined stars speeding by us in outer space. On the other side of the vortex was deep dark stillness either side of us. A large rectangle of red light, with twinkling red lights at its four corners was elegantly moving ahead of us. The lights of another car beamed behind. In this quiet manner we processed home.