I still have not gotten any real work done to post over the last few days and my friend Shelley was not exactly inspired by my last post of vulture pictures. These pretty pictures are for you, Shelley!
As an introduction to these, I am married to a Scotsman (from Glasgow) and I am incredibly fortunate enough to return to the old country every now and then to visit my in-laws and to explore this incredible country. Scotland is truly the most beautiful place I have ever been and after a half a dozen trips, I feel like I have just scratched the surface of what it has to offer. I will happily be returning in May for my 10th anniversary.
My husband, Ken’s idea of a vacation usually involves some sort of supreme exertion: biking across Scotland, taking a sailing course, walking the West Highland Way, climbing mountains, etc. He is not a ClubMed kind of guy; no beaches and drinks with fruit in them for us. No matter how much I beg. Truthfully, I wouldn’t want it any other way even though I often have to start Olympic training for vacations months in advance and am often more tired after we return than I was before we left. Ken seems to be able to go from his sedentary job to mountain climbing with no transition. He’s up the mountain at light speed and I am usually trailing behind panting and taking pictures.
We went out to for the incredibly fun wedding of one of Ken’s cousins in England. For the record for formal occasions, Scottish men wear kilts, English men wear suits and most British women wear hats. There was much drinking and dancing. Fun was had by all. Some of the relatives:
Love those Brits-kilts and hats!
While in England went to Glastonbury; a lovely, but very touristy village with the famous Glastonbury Tor. This town is VERY popular with the New Age set. Glastonbury Tor is said to be a place of power. Whatever you think of it, it’s quite beautiful:
Here’s a view from the top:
View from the top of Glastonbury Tor
Glastonbury also has some incredible abbey ruins click on link for tons of pictures of the ruins
The incredible stone work is worn, but still really beautiful:
Glastonbury Abbey stonework
We went back up north to Scotland after the wedding. Here are some pictures taken from the top of Ben Lomond, in the Scottish Highlands. This was my first (and so far, only) Munro that I made it to the summit of:
View from the top of Ben Lomond
From another direction:
We also spent 3 days sailing the Scottish coast in a beautiful wooden boat called the Eda Fransen. This was one of those extravagant life list excursions. It ain’t cheap.I would post more pictures, but I am tired of editing photos and this has become the longest blog post in the history of the internet. If there is some radical demand from my hordes (ha!) of readers, I will post more another day.
Click on the Eda Fransen link for more pictures of this incredibley beautiful vessel. This was one of those non-fluffy things that Ken likes to do. I did not actually expect to have to work the sails, but that was what we did. Trusting me with a rope system this complicated was very brave of them. I’m surprised I didn’t sink us.
The ropes were never that neat again
We sailed around the Scottish islands of Rum, Eigg, and stopped off on the isle of Canna
Eda Fransen and Isle of Canna
That’s one of the bazillion old churches/ruins in Scotland.
I had never been on a real boat on anything but a lake before. I loved the sailing except for barfing all of day2. On the last day I had my sea legs and really loved it. The people were lovely and the staff and food was first rate. I could never do this for more than a couple of days; the quarters are pretty cramped and I am a bit of a princess. I didn’t get pictures of the berths (beds), but trust me, they are not even as big as an actual human body. Ken and I were stacked like cordwood. The showers are actually the room with the toilet; you just close the door, pull a shower curtain over the toilet (and your clothes) and the turn on the water.
Toilet/shower picture courtesy of travelblog.org
It was cramped for sleeping, but what an adventure. seeing Scotland from the coastline was unbelievable.