Set Your Clock To Cambo Time..

Set your clock to Cambo time. ⏰ ✨ 🌊 🔥 Hidden between the North Sea coastline and East Neuk countryside, lies 13th century Cambo Country Estate. This is the place to wild swim beyond golden sands, unwind and entertain amidst the Victorian splendour of Cambo House, spark friendships by a woodland camp fire. Explore, play, celebrate, and stay. Cambo welcomes you throughout the seasons.  Discover more via 

Spirit Me Away To the Isle Of May...

All aboard! Last year I joined the creative 'crew' 😉 of the May Princess. It's a beautiful wee boat that takes day visitors from Anstruther on the mainland to the island, which lies five miles into the Firth Of Forth. Alex from Anstruther Pleasure Cruises and his sailing crew welcomed me aboard to help tell the story of the May Princess and the Isle of May. It's been a privilege and pleasure to shine a light on this important @naturescot island, while discovering HEAPS about puffins, vikings, smugglers, historic lighthouses, seal colonies, and the ancient priory. During sailings, passengers are also encouraged to keep an eye out for activity in the water. A humpback whale, a basking shark, and playful dolphins have all been spotted in the Firth of Forth recently. The May Princess sails from April to September and it's a real voyage of adventure. Ready to hop aboard? Discover more at

During the first trip of 2023, I stumbled over a selkie on the beach, saw puffins returning to their homeland after 6 months at sea and sat among ‘rock angels’ in what feels like a natural place of worship on cathedral cliffs. The island's ancient priory has crumbled away to almost nothing after Viking attacks, centuries of high winds, and maybe too many seasons of indifference, but the awe-inspiring sea stacks continue to stand defiant against the North Sea and all the storms it brings...

That said, storms seem to be few and far between, and even when they do happen, there's always a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow...

Discover more and book your passage via Anstruther Pleasure Cruises at

Save Our Bank (The Cooperative)

So happy to voice the #SaveOurBank campaign for the world’s first customer union for ethical banking, created to help keep the #CooperativeBank ethical. As a customer of 20+ years, it’s a message very close to my heart…

In the 90s, @thecooperativebank was the only high street bank with an ethical policy underpinning how it does business. It campaigned on these issues, too. Very cool. 😎. At a time when I was first learning about taking an ethical stance in life and work, The Cooperative Bank was a big inspiration. So when the bank hit troubled times, like many customers, I worried about things changing…

The bank’s ethical foundation might have crumbled if not for the intervention of the Save Our Bank campaign. This customer union for ethical banking (backed by @ethical_consumer_magazine) now works closely with the bank to help it stick to its customer-led ethical policy and founding principles.

The original ethical bank had (and still has) a trailblazing policy of not investing our money in unethical activities like selling arms to oppressive regimes, funding fossil fuels, or businesses that fail to implement basic human rights.

So what’s next?

Discover more about the bank’s history, future, become a union member, and donate to the #SaveOurBank campaign via the video…

Because saving (and making) money actually doesn’t have to cost the Earth. And The Cooperative is a bank we can still hold to account. 💰 🌍 💕 🌊 ☮️ | | co-operative

The Wildness Of Themselves (excerpts from The Mermaid Station)


A few years ago, I wrote a fictional story inspired by this magical place and my granny, who introduced me to the beach. The story is called The Mermaid Station and features a mysterious minister's wife, who, in the late 1800s loved to swim in the sea beneath the Mermaid Rock, come sunshine or storms.  It also features her descendants: an unsettled young woman who is intuitively drawn to the beach and the young woman's grandmother who is both hypnotised and terrified by the water. 

Despite visiting this stretch of coastline for many years, I never found the opportunity to swim there until one fateful Sunday morning, just before mid-summer's day. Standing barefoot on the sand, I found the conditions were perfect for taking the plunge.

Finally, instead of just guessing how it would feel to swim in these waters, it was exciting to experience it for real: the pure magic of moving with the tides back to shore, looking towards the waterfall, high cliffs, the white flash of old fishing stations holding ground between land and sea, and the famous rock, shaped like...? Well, the locals say it's a hen but I've always prefered to imagine it's a selkie or mermaid. With that flicker of inspiration, the story of the Mermaid Station and the women who passed through its doors also began taking shape...


Grace rushed into the sea, exhaling in a half-laugh, feeling curiously uninhibited and joyful.  Cool water glided like silk over her body. Circling around to find the face of her granddaughter, she was surprised to see someone else looking back. Yet, the woman was familiar, a reflection of Grace’s younger self... 


Swimming in the sea, on a perfect Monday morning in early Autumn, her mind was clear, empty. She'd spent the night alone at the Mermaid Station, slept peacefully and woken to the sound of near silence. Through a crack in the shutters, a gentle ripple of warm light played upon the ceiling. A faint murmur of water and the cry of a passing gull hinted at the world beyond her window. It was hot enough to take breakfast on the veranda and from there, the glistening North Sea beckoned until she was unable to resist.

Despite the Indian summer, the water was cold. She moved in long, effortless strokes; occasionally a hint of warmth caressed her skin, inviting her to stay a minute longer. Facing towards the horizon, it was tempting to allow the currents to spirit her away, further and further from shore…


Standing on top of a southern dune, I studied immense waves tripping across the surface, pirouetting into the sky and exploding across the harbour walls. In each movement, there seemed to be an invitation to dance. At first, I stood hypnotised, only vaguely aware of others who had come to watch the spectacle.

Against the prevailing wind, my eyes were drawn beyond the mouth of the River Esk. White squalls hurtled towards the northern coastline, crashing against Boddin Point and ravaging the shores of Luna Beach. The Mermaid Rock was a seductress; light was drawn to her face and waves fell upon her form. Above it, the Mermaid Station was clearly visible too. In that place without shelter, it seemed there was peace in the eye of the storm.

The wind whistled its tune, higher and higher, rousing all the boats in harbour, their empty shells rocking back and forth and responding with a melancholic sea shanty that could be heard along Rossie Esplanade.

I was enraptured, renewed by the freezing wind that threw salt spray against my skin and carried my breath out to sea. I had not felt so enlivened since the day I'd spent with Joe, a lifetime ago, on Luna Beach. Then, when I peered into the future, I could see nothing beyond the dread of my ordinary days, the torture of dreamtime and the deadening of my soul.

What else had been going through my mind in that moment, I cannot really say. I only know the sensation of feeling truly alive is a most powerful drug. If we are left deprived, it can drive us mad with desire. The temptation to immerse ourselves in that feeling can lead any of us to take extreme, foolish risks.

Onlookers said that one moment I was watching the churning sea from a safe distance, the next I had stripped away all my layers and charged across the sand, into the surf.

In the water, after the first shock of ice against my skin had subsided, I felt a tingling through my legs, then a wash of relief and visceral calm. Instinctively, I took a deep breath just before the waves pulled me under, and gasped in the sweet cold air as a current whirled me back to the surface. I surrendered to the motion, allowing myself to roll in and out of the sea's embrace. In a single beat, an undertow took charge of my body and was spinning me to the ocean floor, far from the turbulent grey world. Grief was frozen out. There was nothing else. I closed my eyes. My world turned pure white. Then, at its centre, I saw a tiny crimson bud expanding into full bloom. It was little Pete in his bright snowsuit. He was standing by the snowman he'd made for me, little cheeks full of colour, sparkling blue eyes, eager to please and pleading for my affection. Maternal instinct, forgotten but familiar, swelled up inside me then, and I kicked, spun, twisted away from the current. When I broke the surface, a wave lifted me into the air and I glimpsed a crowd on the beach. My survival would have seemed impossible to any rational mind but intuition whispered in my ear; do not let panic take hold. I was dancing with the divine and had to trust that it would lead me home to my son.

The grit of the sand between my fingers was my first sensation of being back on the beach. I turned to see the mountainous waves and wild horizon that had almost claimed me. My freezing, naked body began shaking and laughter spilled from my mouth, euphoria pulsed through my blood. I would do it again and again and again for this feeling. It was freedom.

Later, I could see how it must have appeared: a naked woman, writhing in her own manic laughter on the edge of a sea storm. The crowd had closed in around me, first with words of concern, then exclamations of fury and heavy blankets to dampen the fire inside me.

When I felt the heat of Joe's arms around my waist, all the strange voices and even the sound of the sea faded - but the quiet did not last. I looked into his eyes and saw that he was mortified.

What have you done? What were you trying to do Grace? Have you gone raving mad?  He seemed to repeat himself, relentlessly; his questions bearing down on me with such force that I could not breathe. I began gasping and wriggling against him, fighting for breath, my airways clamming up like a shell.

Before blacking out, I thought I saw, in the water, a woman who looked very much like me, diving beneath the waves and swimming far from shore. But for me, there was no longer any escape.


Through all our centuries of travelling, my people have revered the Mermaid Rock and passed her tale down through the generations. It's believed by some that we are descendants of merfolk described in the legend of the rock, those who crawled out of the sea and took their first steps upon the sand. For many moons, they married amongst the Picts of the North East coastline and dwelled peacefully upon the shore. The Pictish locals named my matrilineal ancestors the Boudiska after our motto, ‘victory of water.’ It was given for our fierce defence of our most sacred element and the souls dwelling within. The finger of land upon which I now sit became known as the Rock Of Boudiska. Through the years, language has whittled it down to Boddin Point. On this cliff, it was prophesised that with the strength of all the seas behind us, and with voices rising like a wave to carry us, the Boudiska would one day win a victory of water for the ocean, all waters, and the creatures we call kin.

Perhaps it was simple folklore. Yet, I have seen with my own eyes and experiences that Boudiska people are inextricably linked to the sea. In our time, we were great seafarers and our women in particular had  - and continue to have - a special ability to commune with the waters. We allow our minds and bodies to become as one with the waves, moving to their rhythms, so that we can swim and dive for long minutes in the roughest seas. Seals, dolphins and even the great whales draw near because they have no fear, recognising us as one of their own.
Always, my ancestors were careful and respectful while hunting for fish, taking only as needed and using all they could. It was said that our first people made boats from sealskin and could travel for many days, across hundreds of miles. They intuitively knew where to find odd-shaped mussels carrying the most mature and beautifully formed pearls. Using the skills of the Picts and precious arganto - silver - these jewels were set into the most exquisite adornments. The Boudiska traded with neighbours and our distinctive pearls found their way into the hands of people all over the world.

Stories about our women travelled too. It was said pearls that crossed our palms were imbued with magic. Our women were also known for having da shealladh, the two sights. There is some truth to this, but we don't think of it as magic. We simply have a strong connection to the natural world: listening, watching, feeling and using all of our senses. We honour signs from our animal guides and pay attention to our dreams. Our women could lead fishermen to the best grounds by sensing the slightest vibrations, feeling the movement of fish in the water - and still, I testify, we can tell you when a storm is coming. We feel the roll of thunder in our bones. Rising sea winds whistle into our dreams, long before the skies turn dark. It is true that we perceive storms of the heart too; water is the element of emotion and so we feel great empathy for those caught in the turbulence of love and hate, grief and joy.

… and they never stopped swimming for the sheer pleasure of being close to the wildness of themselves.

March For Women

 "She's like a mother to me." "She was an inspiration". "I couldn't do it without her." ✨

These statements - perhaps about a friend, mentor, colleague, grandmother, foster mother, aunty, sister, mother figure, teacher - are a lovely reminder there are so many wonderful women we can celebrate in March around International Women's Day, Women's History Month, and, of course, on Mother's Day.

It's a beautiful time to think of, and, if possible, reach out to the women who inspire, support, and love us.

This wonderful woman may be from our past or present, our own birth or adoptive mother, a precious loved one, and/or someone who doesn't even realise the beautiful impact she's made on your life.

We hope you'll join us in celebrating all the brave and vulnerable, beautiful and imperfect, creative and hard-working, struggling and thriving, women of our world.

Today. This month. Always. 💕

THANK YOU to all women who help make life better - right here in our cafe and out in the world. With love from Sophie, Fiona, Sue, Louisa, Malin, Ann, Weronica, Kirsty, Jojo, Emily, Lizzy, Simone, Hollie, Lorna, Vicky, all of us at Pittenweem Chocolate Company. 💖

Ps. If there's someone you'd like to mention and celebrate, we'd love to hear in the comments!

International Women's Day - Paving The Way

Happy #InternationalWomensDay. May we find the clarity, confidence, and courage to pave the way towards a beautiful, peaceful world for all of our children. 💕🌊 🕊 

Dance Up In A Brewery

Take me to the places on the earth that teach you how to dance, the places where you can risk letting the world break your heart. And I will take you to the places where the earth beneath my feet and the stars overhead make my heart whole again and again. ✨ - The Invitation, Oriah Mountain Dreamer

Amongst the big shiny silver brewery kit, old records, bottles of wine and beer, in a tucked away corner of the Bowhouse Fife farm steading, DJ Andy Smith raised the roof with old 45s mixing disco, old skool hip hop, soul, and...even some classic rock. 😉 We were slaves to the rhythm but dancing was pure freedom.💃💕🕊 ps thank you to Bread and Butter Cafe and Futtle Organic too for organising the most amazing dance up in a brewery!