Here is a picture from one of my travels, not sure where? It is on here now and I can't take it off in case I lose everything. I think it might be Malta, my eyes must be getting worse!
Anyway, here I am finally home from my travels in Scotland. although I did go on the scenic train to Whitehaven yesterday. It was a beautiful day. The sea was as blue as I've ever seen it, and the' mountains or hills,' were beautiful shades of greens and browns. I'm never sure,' how tall they have to be to be called a mountain!' I never get tired of this journey, the landscape and colours are a feast for the soul.
I have to say Hi to Pam and Kieron, they work in Dunelm's coffee shop, where I meet some of my ME, Fybro friends. We spend a couple of hours together there and the staff are always busy. Yet still they are very helpful and friendly.
I was listening to a discussion, it was about the fact that enough youngsters were not being trained to work in manual trades now. Although I have seen a lot more of them being allowed to get apprenticships, here in our town we still need more help. Then they were discussing that there are no cookery lessons at school now. One person said it was sexist. It would be, if they were only teaching girls, but even when my son was at school, 'Many years ago.' He took cookery classes and went on to be a Chef at a very well respected hotel in the lakes. He found out in later life he wanted to do something else and made a good job of that.
Well, onto my travels this last couple of weeks. after leaving my friend in Scotland, I came home and felt that I needed a change so I booked a late seat with a certain coach firm to tour Scotland.
I think you all know by now I could do with a bit more common sense. I decided because I was feeling tired after my being under the weather, I wanted to let someone else take care of my baggage etc. I read the intinerary and thought it would be interesting, as I would see quite a lot of the Scottish scenery. I had used the firm I was travelling with before, and been quite happy with them.
This is what I started to write while on the coach.
I started off at 8-45 this morning, on my way to Melrose in Scotland. The first thing that I found strange was it took 4 hours to get people picked up from Dalton, Ulverston, Millom, Whitehaven then Carlisle, and there were no pit stops for us oldies. I’m so glad I didn’t have my second mug of coffee! We finally arrived at Gretna Green. Had 3 quarters’ of an hour to have some lunch and to
use the ablutions. The coach to Melrose is very nice, air conditioned and comfortable, and also thank goodness has a toilet.
The reason I’m explaining this is because! Well, where do I start? The young man tells us he doesn’t have to rush as the Waverley Castle Hotel, rooms aren’t going to be ready until 2-45. Made a good start from Gretna, then we have to follow a diversion. It is some diversion! Our driver takes a turn up a rather narrow road and here we are, and its 4-30 in the afternoon. We are now stranded on moors in the middle of nowhere. Thank goodness I have a bag of crisps and we have been given a bottle of water. We have driven for almost an hour on the road with the help of a local coach driver. He has a small coach, and stopped to tell our driver that it was a very hazardous road. He has very kindly offered to lead him through until it’s safe. It’s really narrow and there are some hair raising bends and a couple tiny of bridges. I don’t think they are meant to take a large, full, coach as they say 10hw and the coach is 13hw. We have been travelling for about 50 minutes and the road has become less of a hazard. So the coach driver has left us to it; but the minute he is out of sight, the front tyre on our coach blows out. So here we are sitting, and waiting, and waiting. Some people are starting to get rather annoyed which is rather silly, because these things happen. Well it seems normal to me as I have had several things like this happen to me.
I am really glad I have brought my note book with me as writing this is keeping me occupied. Half an hour ago everyone became excited because someone says the bus was here. It turned out to be a false alarm and little local bus piddled past us, still it gave us hope that civilisation was somewhere ahead.
Just now as I am writing the last sentence a new coach has turned up. The manager from the hotel has brought the hotel coach out. He said he knew it could be several hours before another coach could get to us. Finally we have arrived at the hotel, and it is nine and a half hours since I set off. Sitting down to dinner in the hotel, I realised if I had been travelling to Dulles airport in the USA; I would have been sitting down to dinner with my friend in Fairfax, VA, having travelled the same amount of time. Although that’s not quite true, my friends have all moved down to Carolina, so now I just change planes in Dulles to get to Carolina.
Still so many things like this happen to me I’m not surprised. I think I have said before that
the girls I worked with always swore they would never go on a plane trip with me. But this was a coach trip, and here I am still in one piece! Dinner was very nice and so was a large glass of red wine. That was it though, 9pm I was in bed.
We went into Edinburgh early the next morning and I totally enjoyed being there. It was a beautiful sun shiny day. I went on one of the open top bus tours. It gives you such an interesting tour and 'I quite enjoyed looking down on people!' Joking apart, it was an eye opener, Princes street was heaving; full of tourists. I have never seen so many Japanese people in one place except on a film from their country. I think that tourists must bring a large amout of cash into this part of Scotland and I can understand it, because it is such a diverse place. I guess if they say yes in their referendum, we will have to use our passport. It will be a shame for all the people who don't have one. Because I know so many who don't travel abroad but love to travel in Britain and Scotland is quite a favourite.
The next day we had a rest day and people just went into Melrose or had a walk around the area. I went down to take a long walk beside the river. It was really pretty as it had a proffusion of wild flowers, which were a mixture of glorious colours along it's banks. I took some pics but will have to put some on later.
'I have decided that I'm not going to say sorry this time, as I keep on doing that and it's time I learned how to use my camera. So watch this space! I am going to see if there are any; how to use your camera classes.' I don't even know how to do a selfie, not that you will ever see me in a selfie. I need air brushing now, before I put a pic of me on. Perhaps if I manage to get some lessons I can learn how to do that as well.
We left early the next morning to travel to Pitlochry where we had lunch, and then nto Strathpepper, where we were stopping at The Highland Hotel. It was a lovely drive and it is the first time I really thought about how much larger than England, Scotland is. Anyway I am going on, when we arrived without a mishap, we were shown our rooms. I went into a quite pleasant room and went into the bathroom, I thought I had missed a door so had another look around and couldn't believe it. The bathroom had no shower, in the last at least twenty five years I have never been anywhere that had no shower. To make it worse they had one of those rubber showers to put on the taps. Anyway moving on! We were there for four nights and the food was good, the staff were nice and the evening entertainment was relaxing. Apart from that, the only other thing that was unexpected was the fire alarm went off after 12 30 and we all left to stand out in the grounds. Luckily I was on the ground floor and watched as many of us oldies struggled down the third third floor fire escape. I hate heights and would have found that scary. We never saw anyone from the hotel and just made our way back after some time. Good job we had a free day the next day. Ten minutes walk from the hotel was a small group of houses and shops. Everyone was friendy there and I sat down to have a coffee in a restraurant called the Red Poppy, and as they had just opened I sat outside in the sun. The young lady who served me was really bubbly and she down to talk to me for a couple of minutes. I would have loved to have an evening meal there as it was a lovely place. I have been trying to cut this last line of Italics out but they wont go. Every time I try to the whole thing comes down and sits over it. Oh what the hell! Onwards and upwards, I say.
I hope you aren't too bored with my travels, I'm going to make it short and sweet now,. Had a wonderful day touring Loch Ness, Fort Augustus, continuing on past the ruins of Urquhart Castle,. We stopped to look at the ruins and they had a high wall and bushes growing around it. To go into see it was £7-90, as a Northener with out own Piel Castle to see and it costs nothing I was shocked. No one wanted pay so on we went. We went right up to Inverness, the 'capital' of the Highlands and that journey took us up to 1,500 ft there was still snow in patches. I was glad we didn't have ablow out up there.
I'm calling this a day now and hope you aren't too bored, I'm not even checking it for mistakes. (Yes I really do try to check it!) I have to say, I hope you have all enjoyed the wonderful weather. And in all I had a great tour wouldn't have missed it.
So bye for now all
Take care and be happy.