Funny thing freedom. Being able to do as you please. And then which choices do we consciously make?
The last few days were all about that. How lucky to be able to spend some days at The Town House Hotel in Marbella. A fab place, nestled in the middle of the old town. The team made me feel like a very special house guest. With only 9 individual rooms it definitely feels more like a house than a hotel. There is a secluded nook on the roof to enjoy the sunshine or partake in a glass of wine from the honesty bar.
So there I was. Truly ‘In the Comfort Zone’. A short stroll down the beachfront took me to my other favourite Marbella comfort zone. The Cappuccino Café. A place to gaze out across the sea to North Africa, the waves travelling along the beach and the palm trees swaying in the sea breeze. A place to enjoy wonderful collections of easy listening music. A place to treat yourself where the staff serve up special gourmet delights and delight in making you feel special.
With all this ‘in the zone’ comfort stuff – oh why oh why do I feel compelled to take myself to the other place. You know – where it is not just easy peasy or plain sailing. Where things take real effort. We fail, try again, not quite right, try again, don’t give up, force yourself to keep going even though you don’t want to kind of a place. A test of resolve, self-discipline and being open to making mistakes.
This is what happened to me when I entered the JoeDaisy Marbella Studio. It was so great to have the support of a master painter to help point me in the right direction and teach me new approaches. We have to transfer that know-how ourselves though. And that was tough this time. I was way out my comfort zone. Believe me I was ready to give up plenty of times.
The Western Isles of Scotland – the islands of Lewis and Harris are sometimes said to be at the end of the world. They are battered by Atlantic wind and rain. A tough place to be at home. And yet, from here, its people, sheep and natural dyes create the unique Harris Tweed fabric much loved all round the world. It was an article in the German magazine ‘Happinez’ that I picked up at Munich airport that provided the inspiration I was looking for. Well, that together with a distant heart felt memory of seeing Highland Cows there. The article featured the photographer Ian Lawson and how he has captured the isles’ beauty and spirit in his book ‘From the land comes the cloth’.
So there you have it – from being in the comfort zone and out of it – I got to a place where my spirit feels comfortable and hope I captured that in the new additions to my Highland Cattle Series. Enjoy.