July 6, 2022

The Last Walk

Louise Pearson

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AudioThe Last Walk, 2022n/a

All across the Highlands we see abandoned croft sites and townships, they go mostly unnoticed as we scurry past worrying about that email we forgot to send, such is the pace of life in the 21st century. I think it’s important to remember the arduous way of life in which most Highlanders lived and reflect on the reasons why their way of life had to drastically change. These old buildings left to ruin are a testament to the hardships these small communities faced and they deserve a closer look. Examine the gaps, admire the craftsmanship, imagine the pain of all the displaced families and their loss of identity as they were forced from their homes, off the land where they had lived for generations. I wonder how that loss has been carried through the generations? Today, rural depopulation is still prevalent as the growing number of second homeowners saturate the housing market. How will the identities of young people today be affected in the long term, having no choice but to leave the area that they grew up in? I watch with interest as our communities adapt to challenges, old and new, and are brought closer together through adversity.