Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Catching Up / Scotland / June 22-27 / Isle of Skye


We stayed for shabbat with a lovely couple in Glasgow. Rachel gave a knock-out shiur (Miriam and the Well) on shabbat morning, and as a result a number of the local women who were going to Israel this summer may come check out Matan. Including our hostess.

The couple had a great house with an amazing collection of art and art books. I was already beginning to feel unwell, so I rested a lot of the day, but I had a lot to look at.

Sun through Wed we were supposed to be in the Isle of Skye, but I had to make a plane at 11:00 am on Wed from Glasgow, and the ride down was 6-7 hours. There were no night buses or trains. As a result, I left Skye on the last bus at 15:20 on Tuesday and slept over in Glasgow again on Tuesday evening. Rachel kept the car.

The Highlands

We drove up through the highlands on Sunday. I thought that I had seen the most beautiful that there was to see, but the highlands upped it even further. Actually, a particular stretch after crossing into the highlands and for the next few miles were the best. The difference between the two is: in the lowlands, everything is green, the water flows neatly, with hills. In the highlands, the hills are higher and more rocky, the tops covered in mist. The green is interspersed with rusty vegetation (the "moors"), and the water rolls and bunches all over the place, like someone simply threw a bucket of water onto the land.


Skye is now accessible with a free bridge - it used to cost money to cross, but enough people complained about this that the levy was eventually dropped. We stayed in Foxwood, a B&B overlooking the ocean on the Western side close to Dunvegan.

As I mentioned, I spent much of the time reading a book (Daggerspell by Katherine Kerr), but I did stroll the coral beach, visit Dunvegan, and trek out to Neist Point lighthouse on Tuesday. A pretty island, but a bit bleak. I prefer forests, myself.

Foxwood was a great place. I had to spend the last night rejuggling all of my travel arrangements for the next week with Tal, as all of them were falling apart.

I left as scheduled, and enjoyed the green green trip back down to Glasgow. The next morning I went to the airport, and that's when most of my troubles began.


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The Highlands of Scotland

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The Highlands of Scotland. Solitude.

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A castle, somewhere outside the Isle of Skye

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Isle of Skye, the Coral Beach

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Isle of Skye, Coral Beach, a purple jellyfish on a rock (one foot wide, 3 inches thick)

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Isle of Skye, Coral Beach, a fairy trail

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Isle of Skye, Dunvegan Castle

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Isle of Skye, a native

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Isle of Skye, near Neist Point lighthouse, Western Isle in the background

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Isle of Skye, a tourist

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Isle of Skye, a native

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Isle of Skye, Neist Point lighthouse

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Isle of Skye, Neist Point. Note the unusual black rock formation. I have no idea what or why

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While trekking out to the black rocks, I encountered hundreds of little rock heaps like these. Obviously deliberately set, they are not glued together, and therefore must fall apart during storms and be rebuilt. Who built / builds them and why? My guess is fairies.



meowsqueak said...

Nice photos.

Those small piles of rocks are called 'cairns'. Early Britons used to erect them as monuments in memory of the dead. The practice has survived thousands of years and now I think people just build them because they can.

MaksimSmelchak said...

Hi Yehuda,

Very cool photos... been enjoying your trip vicariously through you.

Wishing you the best!


Friendless said...

My guess is Indians. The fairies have outsourced.