Thursday, September 3, 2009

The Highlands and Loch Ness

So here it is, the great Loch Ness! It is about a 6 hour drive from Edinburgh up in the highlands of Scotland where the native clansman used to roam. This Loch or lake holds more water than all the lakes and rivers in the UK combined. It is 24 miles long and extremely deep at points with tons of caves and caverns in it. Which gives Nessie many places to hide!
It was pretty much raining all day long which added to the cr.eepieness of the whole experience. The water is very dark as well, because of the runoff from petrified heater plants which are abundant in that area. So it was just creepy all around.
This is just one of the incredible vistas that we saw on our drive through the highlands. Because of all the rain, all these little rivers spontaneously come from the tops of all the hills.
This is one of the highland cattle, the early clansman that lived in this are were hurders. They cared for and sold cattle as a living. These were the ones that were able to withstand the harsh climate.
This scene was all too familiar. Tons of hills all covered with sheep. I loved that part! I saw tons of really cute sheep stuff none of which I bought mostly because I pretty much can't stuff one more thing in my suitcase.

One of the stories our tour guide told that I particularly enjoyed was the story of the song Loch Lomond. We all think it is some kind of love song....well it is, but not in the way you would think. So the words are... "You'll take the high road and I'll take the low road and I'll be in Scotland before you. And me and my true love will never meet again on the bonnie, bonnie banks of Loch Lomond. So story goes that two men were being help captive by the english (still quite a strong rift between the Scottish and the Irish) one of their tactics to get people to tell their secrets was to say to two men that they would kill one man and spare the other. And the prisoners were allowed to choose who. So these two men, one older (old then was about 30) and a younger man were in this situation and the old one says I have lived a good life I will volunteer to be killed and the the younger is being valiant and says no, you have a family, I will die. So they go to bed and during the night the older man speaks with the guards and says that despite what his friend says he wanted to be the one to sacrifice himself. So when the younger man awakes in the morning he finds that note left for him. You take the high road (live) and I'll take the low road (die) and I'll be to Scotland (heaven) before you. What a sad yet inspiring story.

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