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In the Scottish highlands by Jane

Scotland, UK - February 2024

I had specified "a compact economy car" at the car rental, yet when I found myself standing in front of an SUV with keys in hand and 3 hours of driving waiting for me I thought "you've blown it this time"-when all excited I had ignored the reverse driving detail.

Actually, apart from a few moments of initial discomfort, everything went great. You have to get the hang of it, but I recommend automatic transmission and religiously following the white lines of the roadway-they'll be the only friends you'll want while behind the wheel from what is usually the passenger seat for you.

Leaving the highway it was now late in the evening, pitch dark on the narrow roads leading to Loch Ness, skirting the mysterious lake and ... they would lead us to Jane's.

You couldn't see much, we were up and down and almost always lost signal. Jane was our host, she had sent us the coordinates but if we needed to call her we would have been screwed. She waited for us and welcomed us into her country home, and I already sensed that it was going to be a special place.

Jane has few rooms, and she takes care of the details with affection and thoughtfulness. In the morning she would make us scrambled duck eggs from the farm behind the house, with bread she made, homemade jams, and fresh fruit. One day we made friends at the table with other young guests, while she never left us without advice about the Scottish highlands or a few chats about her life.

Originally from Dundee and tired of the hustle and bustle and grayness of the city, she moved here a few years ago with Gill and two beautiful dogs to enjoy the peace, slowness and quality of life in the highlands. She told me that she has always been connected to tourism, first as a manager in a hotel facility and now welcoming guests in her own way.

That evening we were returning from a day on the Isle of Skye, one of the most breathtaking places I have ever seen, and we were going to have dinner at home. We found Jane and Gill at the stove surrounded by delicious smells: we devoured a leek and potato soup, a potato and meat gateau, and the most phenomenal dish of those days: Baltimoral chicken, with a whiskey sauce and haggys stuffing to make your head spin.

At Jane and Gill's I felt at home, in the middle of nowhere, with no signal.

Scotland, UK
In the Highlands

Scotland, UK
Scotland, UK
Jane's cookbooks
Scotland, UK
Breakfast at Jane's
Scotland, UK
The best Balmoral chicken in the world
With Jane

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