30.05.2015 - 30.05.2015
Last night it was still light outside at about 11pm when I looked and then the sun was on the rise again from about about 3am. Strange!
We did not hit the road, following breaky until 8:30 with Urquhart Castle on our itinerary as first stop. The trip alongside Loch Ness was wonderful on our sunshine day today. I had my camera poised for The Monster, but Rob seemed certain I would not be successful with that one!
We beat the coaches to Urquhart Castle and enjoyed walking the grounds and crumbling ruin in the quiet morning air. Views of Loch Ness were calm and the only ripples in the water were from the Jakobite tour cruise passing the Castle.
We finally had success photographing Swallows and House Martins (birds) in and around the castle. They were swooping and nesting in and around the exterior and interior walls. Obligingly they posed for the camera.
About 30 minutes further down the Loch, we discovered the sleepy little Fort Augustus. A gorgeous town with a functioning Loch systemas part of the Caledonian Canal flowing down the centre. Along with others we stood on the pathways watching two boats move through the lochs in stages, with gates and bridges moving accordingly. It was such a peaceful, gradually timed action that no one could rush. It took as long as it took and people just waited on the boats and observed on the sidelines quietly and with interest. Eventually the two boats were released out onto Loch Ness.
The Highland Club, an ex Abbey, had fields of Bunnies, bumble bees and birds all basking in the sunshine. One bunny was very photogenic, others just plain cute as they hopped away into an area that was sectioned off but we are sure beneath the wood, tin and leaves was a crawling mass of bunny fluff. A bird feeder distracted about 4 varieties of birds so we could get them. Our bird book will help us identify all these accurately later.
Twas not me who upset a scotsman today but another tourist. She was standing in the middle of a main road to take a photo....he wound down the window of his car and roared at her for the inconvenience she'd caused him. Just a touch dangerous.
We cruised the streets, stores and pathways in leisure. Fort Augustus was a beautiful place to visit
Our bonus at Fort Augustus was that the parking meter was broken, people were cheering in the parking lot as they read the sign saying it was free until June 1...
When the time came, we retraced our path along Loch Ness to Leakeys Bookstore for a second visit, in Inverness and purchased a Winnie the Pooh book in Latin, to add to the collection. The woodfire was burning in the centre of the store today radiating warmth amongst the books and readers.
When we returned to the hotel we tested our creative ability to keep our cases under 23 kilos for our flight tomorrow to The Orkneys. If anyone attacks me and I use my backpack as a weapon, they will be dead, or crushed under the shear weight of the contents....well the other 23 kilos had to go somewhere! Rob says I need to add at this point my/our notebook/journal weighs 7kilos on its own.
My physios name is Jarrad, I'd appreciate someone making an appointment for me with him when I return, tell him my shoulders will have strap indentations and I'll have a buckled spine. Both knees now need treatment!! But hey....gotta get it home without financing The Royal Mail any further!