Richard Lutz holds his breath as Britain twists in the wind.
I reach for my bottle of three year old Whyte and Mackay whisky – usually kept for scouring of obscure corners beneath my kitchen sink – and a multi pack of 750 mg quick relief Ibuprofen.
Hopefully it will ease the pain as Etonian jester Boris Johnson sets up shop at Number Ten Clowning Street (many thanks for the address from a tabloid headline writer I pinched it from).
This bit of political lunacy only adds to the misery of the latest of dental disasters. My crown, complete with post, is propelled outward at 438mph everytime I sneeze.
My dentist calls for radical decisions which include a jaw replacement, a mouth transplant or some sort of compicated denture/plate/bridge device that could act as a sub-structure for a skyscraper in an earthquake zone. I leave seeing ££££ symbols pulsate and dance in front of my eyeballs like cheap neon signs.
To assuage these numbing disasters (political and orthodontic), I follow my local walking group as we tromp over the Southern Uplands in lower Scotland.
It is one if the loneliest places in Britain (see below). The prevailing wind whips in from the southwest, the hills loom and disappear behind rolling banks of cloud and the sky, when seen, is a billion miles high.
It is gorgeous, eerily quiet with only a pierced call of a hawk or a rare osprey to interrupt.
The ground underneath as we roll up Craiglee is soft from recent rain. Bog Asphodel (see above) dots the rising flank and the quiet nicks between the hills. Wild myrtle, tough and resilient, spices the air with sharp wisps of fragrance. Tough little flowers hug the rocks. Dragonflies zip in and around ferns and the white flowers of sweet smelling meadowsweet, the sweetest fragrance in the hills.
The long arm of Loch Doon (above) lies below us. But it isn’t only the emptiness that allows me to forget my tooth (there it goes again after a sneeze) or the muddle of Brexit and Boris.
It’s also the great names of hills and glens here in this quiet corner of SW Scotland where Ayrshire meets Galloway: The Rinns of Jarkness, Clatteringshaws, Loch Dungeon, Murder Hole, Strife Rig, Mullwharchar, The Rigg of Shalloch, The area reeks of mystery and silence.