Thursday, April 17, 2008

A Trip North to Inverness and Nairn

We took a side trip out of Edinburgh, north to Inverness and Nairn and then back again. The rain was so heavy in Inverness the camera mostly stayed in the case. The only picture I took in Inverness was out the Tower Hotel (also known as Strathness House) window across the river to the city centre. If you're ever in Inverness it's a lovely place to stay. Good dining room and excellent bar. Get them to tell you the history of the place.

As we tramped along in Inverness, up above the town and the river, just rubbernecking in our raincoats and tweed caps, a very tiny woman of about 70 walked toward us. As she came abreast she quietly muttered, with a sharp little twinkle in her eye, "Sorry about the weather".

In Nairn we stayed with a cousin of one our travelling companions. She, the cousin, drove us out to Cawdor Castle, (yes that Cawdor) one of the very few castles that's still lived in most of the year. The dowager duchess is in residence for the winter and moves out for the prime tourist season. It's like touring someone's house except it's not. There are books open beside the beds and tea things on the table in the living room. Unfortunately I was not allowed to take pictures inside. But the outside looks like this.

This is the Cawdor family crest, or at any rate one of them. I rather like the sentiment.

Here's the view across the tracks at the train station at Nairn. I can only assume there's a way to get there without clambering over the tracks but I didn't see it.

These guys were obviously getting ready for a big to-do somewhere in town.

This next one's especially for Mike who really should visit his aunt and be surprised by Scotland.

This picture has no business being this nice. I shot it out the train window at about 160 kms/hr en route from Nairn back to Edinburgh. I never knew the name of the beach or the ruin and I didn't make a note of where we were near. But isn't it pretty?

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