Friday, October 14, 2016

day 12 & 13: fort william, oban, staffa

day 12: the road to Fort William

leaving skye was tear jerking.

especially since today held true Scotland weather. overcast. windy. sometimes raining. sometimes not.

it is how Scotland should be viewed. you can appreciate it fully. all the hues of burnt umber, deep moss green, grey, pale green, pale golden yellow. stunning.

the road to Fort William held fall hues on the trees. heartbreaking hues. electric greens about to turn yellow, so much golden yellow, and some spurts of burnt orange. the deciduous trees of course. the perfect evergreens are ever green. we've noticed the evergreens are in perfect rows in their forests. it's almost amusing how perfect they are lined up and just perfectly variegated in height.

made it to Fort William and shopped a good bit. still haven't found all our souvenirs. went to the West Highland Museum. great museum. and I got me some gorgeous prints for our home. illustrations of the landscape in a 1940s style. they made me tear up so I knew I needed them. hey, if I can't take the mountains that make me tear up, I must take some illustrations that do the same to me.

did some more shopping. one thing the U.S. should definitely learn from the U.K. - have liquor in your grocery stores please. then you can truly call it a one stop shop.

chilled out at the hostel, met our roommates - the very first couple we've stayed with! they're from chile, studying in Edinburgh for a year. we are green with jealous rage.

day 13: oban & staffa

the road to oban was winding and tiresome, too early.

almost had a mishap with the ferry, but the lovely people of Scotland are all too kind to help you remedy your troubles.

as of today we have now taken plane, train, automobile, and boat on this trip! several boats today, but the ferry to and from mull was the largest boat we had both been on. it's a ferry that can carry cars as well, but we didn't take our car.

I'll just skip all the boring bits and tell you that we went to Fingal's Cave on Staffa.

and that beat out the stacks at John O Groats for me.

so now the ranking is officially

Fairy Pools in Skye
Fingal's Cave on the Isle of Staffa
the stacks at Duncanby Head at John O Groats
Edinburgh
North Coast / Smoo Cave

we also went to the Isle of Iona. lovely little place. explored a bit.

but this was the first tour we have taken in this trip. and boy am I grateful. tours are awful. you know why? because there are people. tourists. just like us... but more annoying. and cramped in a bus with you.

let's just say I've never been more annoyed by a man with an Australian accent than today. nor did I want to glare at stupid California girls with an evil eye more than today. so thankfully this was our first and last tour experience.

but everything else about the tour was nice!!

and Fingal's Cave is bomb awesome. I just can't express how floored I am by all the geological diversity here. how in the world is there an island with hexagonal basalt columns with gorgeous hues of flora and water just chilling here. how.

our drive back to Fort William from Oban was also amazing. it was our only other night drive aside from the horrors of night driving to Achiltibue. this was far superior. I believe the moon is either full or about to be. but it was so bright. we mistook moonlight on the road as headlights at one point, and the moon was casting shadows. and it was foggy!!! the moonlight in the fog and seeing the silhouettes of the trees in said foggy moonlight... we were in awe. the moon was also casting shadows of the clouds onto the mountains. and so bright you could see the shadows and highlights in the cloud forms. wish I had pictures of that, but it will have to just be recorded here for memory.

tonight I became super hostile with our hosteling. I had just begun my shower, just wet my hair when the nice hot water trickled to nothing. turn the dial, nope. so I text Jason and ask him to come to the bathroom I was in and ask him if I've done it wrong (some of these showers have been difficult to figure out how to get on). no, I've not done it wrong. I put on a towel and he helps me gather all my shower things, clothes, etc and dash to another shower.

super done. done with sharing rooms with people and having to be considerate, quiet, getting ready in the dark. super done with tiny showers and then brushing teeth in another room, usually having to wait for any of these rooms to be free.

it was fine for the first 3 hostel stays. but this 4th one... I don't know, it's just getting under my skin. same with Jason.

but our last night in Scotland, we will be at an airbnb in Glasgow... with the nicest shower to date. a fully glassed in rainforest shower, also sprays from the wall.

I'll be in there for approx 3 hours.

don't worry about it.

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