Tuesday, October 11, 2016

day 8 & beginning of 9: the north coast

it was a hard goodbye to Ellen when we left Thurso. had I mentioned that when I was looking at Airbnb's, I just had this gut feeling that we needed to stay at their place even though there was only one picture so I couldn't judge what our stay would be like. I just knew for some reason we needed to stay there. we were meant to meet Ellen and David. we will never forget them.

journeyed on the coast with David's  lovely itinerary. many stops at beautiful sites, beaches cliffs etc. I have not much to say, except the beauty is astounding... impossible to describe except by being breathless and only able to say "wow" or "oh" ...all you can do.

smoo cave was lovely even though boat tours had closed down for season (as has most everything here for tourism). my favorite part of the day was spontaneously exploring castle ruins on a peninsula just off the road. sheeps were sheeping there as well.

making our way to our airbnb in the dark was quite anxiety ridden for me, I will not lie. I battle anxiety, I try to not let it overtake me, but in this instance I lost the battle much to mine and Jason's dismay. while on top of not feeling well at all, just thinking we have no idea where we are and how to get where we are going, no service, can't really see much of anything, single track roads where you have to pull over in designated places to make way for oncoming traffic.... I lost it when we had to make way for a large lorry (what we call box trucks... no 18 wheelers here but this one was close). but Jason kept his head on even though it was pounding (he has a mild case of what I have). we made it to where we thought we were supposed to be, but it wasn't the place.

so we pulled to a home that looked lived in and approached, knocked several times until an older lady answered and helped us figure out (after some confusion) where we needed to be. and we got there! our host told us the pub 2 miles away stopped serving lunch in 30 minutes so to dash over, and we did. both had steak and potatoes.

our night was okay. I slept well thanks to heavy drugs haha. Jason did not sleep well as I snored (head cold!) half the night apparently...

our morning was lovely. our host was a WEALTH of knowledge on all things Scotland.

helped us discern more Gaelic (pronounced in Scotland: Gahlick, which is apparently a different language from the Irish Gaelic, pronounced Gaylick).

told us that Gaelic was totally banned in public forum until 1985!!! and that the signs (roads, ect) with Gaelic on them were only put up in the past 10 years

also helped us decipher the name Landrum, which is likely lawndrum, or lindrum, either a bog on the ridge or a small lake on the ridge. either way some dampness on the ridge. Gaelic is a language based on topography, with 20 words for mountain so that you know exactly what kind of mountain.

mac is son of... so macpherson, son of Pearson ect...

we also talked politics a good while and how governments all over the world are and how absolutely daft American government is, since we don't even elect our president nor do we elect the members of electoral college.

so much wonderful conversation, we could have kept going for hours... but he heard the clock chime 11 (our checkout time) and realized we had been chatting two hours straight without knowing!!

now we have made our way to Ullapool where I had just enough service to write this post! and here are minimal photos as most were taken on my real camera and not my phone!!

the final photo is the view from the bathroom at our airbnb this morning. the bathroom.

now we ride through Wester Ross with our final destination being Broadford in Skye. not sure what kind of Internet we will encounter, so until next time... cheers!

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