Summer 2009 – Week 5 ending 5th August

9 Aug

Every year we holiday at home I start the summer with a list of places I want to visit. Sort of like a list of achievements not quite… achieved. So far this summer I have failed to visit Glencoe, Loch Ness, Eilann Donnan Castle, Arran and and any West Coast beach. I also wanted to see the Skye Bridge. I didn’t expect to make it to all of them but one would have been nice.

We have, however, managed the Fife beaches, Culloden, Edinburgh, Dundee, two zoos and this week Queen’s View and Killicrankie. I’m fairly ashamed I’ve never been to Queens View given it’s only an hour away. And fairly famous. There we showed a shocking lack of knowledge of our own history and fed the kids the same old duff we’d been brought up believing… that it was named after Queen Victoria and it was her favourite view. Two minutes on Google put paid to that. It turns out it was already known as Queens View when Vic visited in 1866 – and it was a pretty dreech day they day she was there. She doesn’t seem to offer an opinion either way in her journal entry for that day. It was, apparently, named after Queen Isabella, wife of Robert the Bruce. You learn something new every day. So my Mum says.

Tis pretty though, whoever it was named for.

I made ’em all pose for me at the view. Seeing’s it took us a whole hour to get there…

Some with more success than others.

Yes, it’s pretty…

But there’s only so much “pretty view” a four year old can manage before his insistence on leaving gets embarrassing in front of the Italian tourists.

Panorama…

Yeah OK we’re going…

Jump for joy why doncha?

Poor boys, we only travelled another 10 minutes or so before dragging them out of the car for more history. This time Soldiers Leap at Killiecrankie. Again my history was a bit vague, due mainly to the confusion added to the mix by Oor Wullie, who often played at being the Rob Roy MacGregor, leaping the pass to escape the English Redcoats. How shaming to discover it was actually a Redcoat who leapt 18ft over the pass to escape Jacobite soldiers. Oh well. Some days you learn two new things.

In a very bad bit of planning we joined the A9 at House of Bruar. Again. I love this place. It has the best toys.

I can’t imagine every having a “spare” £60 for these, but I love them muchly…

And  these…

And all this…

Kitchen porn. Kathryn’s funny. When she leaves home she’s going to have all this in her kitchen. Yeah. Better have a great paying job my darling daughter! Just for the cupboards you’re going to need to store it all in.

I had to be dragged out.

The next day Neil and I got out to play on our own. We lunched at a French restaurant in town on mussels, pate, lamb, pork, ridiculous apple pie and the best coffe in the world. And red wine. DUH. No I did not take the camera. That would have been just too sad.

I didn’t take it to Dundee the next day either, when it was gloriously sunny and even Dundee looked good. Or when we all went into town to help Neil pick new glasses. That really was a missed opportunity. In fact the camera barely left it’s bag for the rest of the week. You get weeks like that.

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