I recently purchased the latest Julie Fowlis album on itunes. Brian and I have had the opportunity of watching her preform a couple of times, singing in Gaelic, old tunes from the islands of Scotland, she is a brilliant musician. It goes with out saying that each time I hear her tunes I am transported back to Scotland and so many memories arise of our travels through that country.
There were so many beautiful places that I find it hard to ever say "X" is the most beautiful place in Scotland. As a matter of fact, I would find it hard to trust anyone that quickly stated that one single place in Scotland was more beautiful than and other. So instead I speak in terms of the memory of a place and the level of that memory. One of my fondest memories by far was our impromptu walk in the village of Ballachulish, in Glen Coe. We had stopped at least a half dozen times to take photos of the glen when we finally decided we should just park the car and take a walk. We were lucky enough to find an old dirt road that ran parallel to the main road. Surely this must have been the old road through Glen Coe ? Our imaginations ran wild with visions of Scots of old in kilts traveling on the road between villages through the glen, Scotland will do that to the imagination.
There was the threat of rain and the temperatures were in the low 50's with a good stiff wind, perfect soft Scottish weather. We walked a couple of miles not really talking, we just took in the awesomeness of the place we had found ourselves in. Our walk took us over a small brook, and past fields of heather, all the while the wind blew and the clouds would not relent. It was perfect !!
After about and hour or more of walking we found ourselves chilled to the bone and extremely hungry. Luckily not far down the road was the Clachaig Inn, a picturesque inn set back in the woods with a pub that was a total cliche of the typical Scottish country pub. Fine with us, we had subsisted happily on pub fare throughout much of the country. It is important to know that during our sojourn to Scotland we were able to meet and spend time with our dear friends Mark and Mairi. We spent a weekend in Oban and enjoyed a trip to the isle of Mull, sharing pub dinners with locals playing tunes by the fireside and Mark and Mairi's wee dog Texas at our feet as we dined.
Now we found in Scotland there are certain nuances to the culture, and people most certainly identify with family groups and regions of birth. Much of this was lost on us until our lunch at the Inn. On our arrival this was the sign we encountered.
Good to know Mairi……………good to know.
Here's a Julie Fowlis video link