The Storied Scrolls
Zack Thoutt's Reader Group & Newsletter
Issue #9 · Sep 12th, 2022
Nomad Life · CH 18
The Outer Hebrides
An armchair travel story about senseless canine fines, ambling through the West Highland Way, and groping standing stones.
e began our adventure in Scotland by hopping between islands in the western isles. Some of the passages took only twenty minutes and were operated by a small boat with space for half a dozen cars, while others lasted several hours and felt like cruise ships featuring restaurants and casinos.
To be completely honest, I have no idea how Shelby planned our itinerary through this part of the trip and kept it straight in her head. We spent several full days driving, during which we crossed between islands on ferries multiple times per day. Shelby often plans complex trip itineraries beyond what I’d ever attempt on my own, but this was the first time I’ve ever become so confused, that I gave up trying to keep track of where we were going and how we were going to get there...
Message from Zack
In April 2022, I took an entire month of work so that we could travel throughout Scotland and enjoy our final days of nomadic life to the fullest. This chapter follows our adventures throughout the Scottish Isles and Highlands.
I'm nearing the completion of Nomad Life and now have rough drafts of all the remaining chapters finished. In the coming months, I will publish the final three chapters which cover our cruise across the Atlantic with Skutull, our drive back to Boulder from NYC, and a reflection on how our journey changed me.
In other good news, I'm working (slowly) on publishing Tales of Twilight in both ebook and print format. It will be a short story collection about 75 pages in length and will mark the end of Tales of Twilight as an ongoing story series. I'm still not sure what I'll work on next, but I will be happy to officially finish my first two writing projects.
After spending the month of July in Norway on a solo adventure, Shelby has returned home!
P.S. Here are my favorite links since last time
- Movie: In the Realm of Senses - this infamous Japanese film's frequent and lengthy unsimulated sex scenes have been controversial since it premiered in 1976. The start of the movie felt a bit like fancy porn, but by the end I was seriously questioning whether the gore and violence we're all numb to in entertainment is worse than unsimulated sex. I wouldn't ever claim this movie as a favorite, but it was certainly one of the most unique films I've seen in a long time. It was refreshing to watch something that doesn't follow the formulaic Hollywood model and I think that even if the film had been shot without the unsimulated sex scenes and in a conventional PG-13 way, the story would stand alone as interesting and entertaining.
- Book: Of Wolves and Men - this book written by Barry Lopez explores the complex history and relationship between humans and wolves. I don't know how to summarize what the book is about without diving into a lengthy diatribe, but suffice it to say that this is among my favorite non-fiction books I've ever read and has reshaped how I view dogs, wolves, history, and our relationship as humans with nature.
Enjoy the journey,