"It is in the wild places, where the edge of the earth meets the corners of the sky, the human spirit is fed." Art Wolf

Monday, October 14, 2019

And More Scottish Explorations

The day of driving around doesn't stop at one castle.  The route back took me north of Inverness to Fort George just to see something that wasn't a castle.   The fort is one of old history (250 years) and current history as it is still being used by the army.  Folks over here do seem to be able to repurpose buildings well.  I notice the similarities between early forts in the colonies and these.   That turet looks like the ones that were on the fort in San Juan. 

The moat.

The draw bridge was here.  

More moat.

And then you see this, over 40 acres of grounds and buildings.

On each side of the battlements there was a sally door that soldiers could use to run out and confront the enemy.  One side the door remains the same small size it always was and on the opposite side the door has been enlarged to serve as the main gate for the current military needs and vehicles.

Looking back across the Parade Grounds at the main gate of the old fort and imagining just how many individuals were housed and marched here long ago.

On the way back out I watched a young officer get out of his car and proceed to help his three small children out of the back seat.  This housing might be a bit bleak for children.

And these were only one section of barracks.....

The view off the head lands of the Fort. It was and is still well positioned.

On my walk back towards the car working to keep my ears warm in the wind I spotted some brave Kite Surfers.....hopefully all in warm wet suits.  

Later, I drove down the farm lane, past the chickens and up the road to the pub for dinner.

The next morning I got up and started a little earlier than usual so that I could make the first run of the Steam Train. There were clouds again but also sunshine.

The Steam Train runs from a small town south east of Inverness along the edge of the Cairngorm Mountains.  The area was originally just known for its winter skiing but has now developed "wild" camping and hiking in the area and the stores in town reflect their hoped for market.

The train runs out to two different stops. At the second stop the train pulls past and waits while the engine repositions itself to pull us back.

It was a small station out in the middle of nowhere. Luckily, I seemed to get in the line for the bathroom early.  There was a bathroom on the train but I was not  interested in that much of an adventure.  Nothing fancy here, nothing to see.....

At the stop it became apparent that the windows do get washed.  From our standard compartment we were not sure. They were dirty.  We wondered if you had to upgrade to First Class to get clean windows.  Apparently, First Class doesn't see out much better.  It was difficult to tell which windows had been washed......  Old steam trains also have old steam train windows.

This is the beautiful area around the small station.

And someone came to see their visitors off.

If I opened the small window above the seats and stood, there were a few photogenic possibilities.

Back in town it was time to wander past the stores (including three different thrift/charity shops) and find something to eat.  This was my Fish and Chips day.  The fish was delicious but most of the chips got left behind.   

Just some of the nice architecture in town.

From the train ride I drove back north again to visit the Culloden Battlefield and Memorial.  I met this handsome fellow grazing near the parking lot.

This is a reproduction of the original crofter's cottage that stood on the field at the time of the battle and is referred to on maps and writing from the time.

A big field on which the English and the Jacobites lined up across from each other.  They were out numbered. They were out maneuvered.   They lost horribly and so ended the last Jacobites rebellion.

A four month old Cocker Spaniel out exploring the grounds.

The memorial built for the Jacobites.

Individual stones have been set for each Clan and some for a mixture of more minor Clans.  The battle field felt like holy ground in the same way that Gettysburg does but on a smaller scale. 

This one is for the Clan Munro who I believe brought 426 men to fight for the English.

But he is just so handsome.

Just throwing in random photos from the B&B including the evidence of puppy teeth chewing on one of the breakfast chairs.

And I know that my friend Sarah will appreciate the silver toast holder and appreciate that it gets used every morning. 

1 comment:

  1. Love the pubs where people bring their dogs and the owner seats groups based on where they can fit their dogs under their seats!! Judy