Archive for the ‘Cathedral’ Category

No Place like Home…..   1 comment

Well I’m finally home, or course, and because of the hectic last day in Scotland,  the trip home and not being able to post that last day, I felt I really needed to added one last posting regarding our trip.

Friday, we checked out early from our lodgings and headed up to Dunfermline.  Dunfermline was Scotland’s capitol until 1603 and there is located the Abbey Church and ruins of the Palace.  Within the Abbey are the tombs of 22 Scottish Kings and Queens, including that of Robert the Bruce.  It was a MUST SEE Historical site for me, so that was our first stop……annnnddd….it was closed……….major bummer!!!  We wandered around the grounds of the Abbey and looked over the fence at the ruins of the Castle but that was as close as we were able to get…..

After that disappointment we headed up to Dunkeld as we made our way toward our ultimate destination–the Enchanted Forest.  Dunkeld is a beautiful little village on the River Tay.  My favorite musician, Dougie Maclean lives nearby–didn’t see him–but it was great to be in his home town and see the places he talks about.   Unfortunately I didn’t get any photos…it was POURING rain when we got there and I didn’t want to take the chance on getting my camera soaked.  So we just heading off walking through town, visiting spots and finally ended up at the Dunkeld Cathedral, went inside and viewed all the items of interest–including the memorial to Neil Gow– one of the most famous Fiddlers ever and one of my favorite musicians.  He is buried on the grounds of the cathedral.  While we were in the Cathedral, the rain stopped and the sun came out–we walked outside and were greeted with some of the most breathtaking scenes of our entire time in Scotland……aaannddd….my camera was in the car clear at the other end of town…  We decided to walk back in hopes of retrieving it and coming back but on the way the clouds closed back in and the rain resumed….bummer again……  Well, it is a memory that I will treasure regardless.

We finally ended up in Pitlochry, where we were to be able to see the Enchanted Forest in the evening.  It was a great little town also and we were able to relax a bit, have a final meal at a local pub and then board the bus that would take us to the Enchanted Forest.

The Enchanted Forest is something that I had heard about a couple of years ago and thought it would be so great to see something like that.  It is located just outside Pitlochry in Faskally Wood, in Perthshire’s Big Tree Country.  It draws over 20,000 visitors each year for it’s approximately 3 week run.  With all the rain that we were getting that day, we were really afraid that it might be canceled but that evening before we were scheduled to attend, the rain ceased and the skies opened up to the most brilliant display of stars above the canopy of the forest.  It made for a cold (37 degrees) but beautiful evening and the lights and music of the displays at the Enchanted Forest were wonderful.  I was able to get some photos and will post these in the slide show at the end of this blog.

We had hoped that the trip home would have been peaceful and uneventful…not the case….it was near as bad as the flight out–I’ll spare you the details, I haven’t got the energy to write about it now.

Being in Scotland was one of the greatest experiences of my life…it’s hard to believe I’m back in the US now–it went by so fast.  We saw so very many things, places and breathtaking scenes, and at the same time missed so many other things that we would have liked to see because of time constraints or lack of daylight….or closed for the season time changes….  MAYBE someday I’ll be able to go back again.  I never thought I’ve ever have the opportunity to go in the first place, yet I did.  That certainly is an encouragement that it could be possible to visit again….hmmm…better get my list of places I want to see started…..

But another thing that really made it special and worthwhile was the fact that I was able to spend this time with my boys and enjoy all of it together.  I will be eternally grateful to my son, Ryan, who made the dream-come-true.  “We’re gonna do it, Dad!!” and we did….Thanks, buddy, I love you!!

Thanks for following along on the blog.  I’m glad I spent the time recording some of our travels and photos–maybe it will encourage you to fulfill some dream that you’ve had of something you’ve always wanted to do or go see.  If so I’m happy for you–it could lead you to one of the greatest experiences of your life as well….

Aye!

Howie

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Honey, I’m Home!!!…well sort of….   2 comments

Well today was the day us Georges finally returned home–to Dundee!!!  It was actually quite interesting.  Not really a lot to see there but we did a lot of driving around the area.  One place we wanted to go is called the Dundee Law.  It’s probably the highest point above Dundee with an incredible overlook of the area.  Sun wasn’t in a good position at the time of day we were there but we took a ton of photos anyway.  It was rather moving to be standing there on top of that hill thinking that at one time our g-grandparents had probably hiked up with their kids to see this incredible view and were standing in similar places that we were standing in right at that moment.  I’m really glad we had a chance to visit our old “home”.

Here are a couple of shots from up on the Law:

Before we got to Dundee, we stopped by and visited Aberdour Castle–one of the oldest castles in Scotland.  It is the ancestral home of the Mortons and Douglases.  Tons of fascinating history that happened here.  Beautiful scenery as well.

We spent the rest of our time today in St. Andrews—stopped at the Golf Course, of course! 🙂  But the REAL excitement came in visiting the ruins of St. Andrews Cathedral and St. Andrews Castle.  The Cathedral just blew us away–it was huge!!!  MUCH larger than any of the Abbeys we visited the other day and much larger than St. Giles.  What it must have been like we can only imagine but we were just astounded by all that we found there.

The ruins of the Castle were just down the street and we didn’t have as much time to visit it but found it incredibly fascinating with all the history and things that happened there.

We absolutely loved St. Andrews and the weather was probably the best we had of our entire trip so far.  Nothing out-of-the-ordinary happened today, no “Plant Crossings”, nothing like that.  The countryside was beautiful–not as beautiful as the Border country we just visited–but still beautiful.

Tomorrow we plan on visiting Edinburgh Castle, Sterling Castle and hopefully one other that might be in the area.  Time changed here, too, and so it gets dark early–which is a bummer because we’re having a hard time getting up as early as we’d like 🙂  Oh well, tomorrow’s another day…

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Posted October 31, 2010 by Howard George in Aberdour Castle, Castle, Cathedral, Dundee, St. Andrews

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