I have been home for 14 days in a row,
and have begun to feel bored. Fortunately, Jesper has found a good
deal: Scotland by car. Morten is easy to lour along.
22/2 1997. Morten, Jesper and the undersigned lands in Aberdeen, get our Vaxhall Vectra and drive through the first roundabouts. Morten and Jesper are driving, I come up with harsh remarks, pointed tips and unpleasant exclamations from the back seat. The first set of roundabouts, right outside the airport is three connected, like a father frost. O0o. Considering it is the first time we drive in the left side, we cope well (well, most Jesper at the wheel).
99.9% of all Scottish houses are built of granite, they have 1-2 meters thick walls and the style has not changed in the last 2-500 years. All of the city's road shoulders are covered by crocuses or daffodils in billions. Very beautiful and it is neat and tidy everywhere. You automatically think of an environmentally-correct country until you find in a photo shop that in Scotland you just throw mercury batteries in the trash. Where is the European Union when to finally need it?
We head into Aberdeen city centre, loot
a tourist office, and find a pub where we make plans for the first
afternoon. We start in the botanical garden which has Europe's
largest greenhouse. Nice collection of plants.
return home to get over the trifle and examine the tourist material.
We have photos, sights lists and 4-5 maps. In spite of the fact that
our interests are rather coincidental, it takes a long time to put
together a combined list and roadmap. We have certain criteria for
castles: They must be by / in the water, they must be well
preserved, beautiful and have a historical significance. (At a later
B&B, we find the biggest, most beautiful, historic and most
well-preserved: A photo of Kronborg on a cake box! - and yes, it
23. After a classic English breakfast table (serials, toast, bacon, sausages, fried eggs, tomato, beans and - no thanks - kippers), we head south to get to the hotel that sells fishing permits. Find it eventually, but they only have 2 fishing spots and there is a lot of obstacles. We get the name and address of a place that has multiple spots. Drive around town, and finally we finding the place: Our own BB! Experience now that even the fishing grounds have closed on Sundays! There is "Put & Take", but it is nature calling.
Cruise around a bit, down to Ballater,
and find a river that does not require fishing permits - or at least
have no signs. Catching nothing, but now we have tried. Cruise more,
see plenty of sheep on pasture or beet fields. It is teeming with
rabbits, even on the road. Stops at a few castle ruins, including
Corgarff Castle. The landscape consists of large hills.
Continue west, where we find the Glenfiddish distillery in Dufftown. Starts the tour of the truck that unloads the sprouted grain. It is ground, fermented for 3-4 days, rinsed with warm water 3 times, fermented for 4-5 days in giant 6-8 meter high open barrels, distilled 3 times, stored in oak barrels (10% recycled Madeira barrels for sweetness and colour) for 5-15 years, and poured on bottles. We get a taste and visit the shop. Most places we come there are gift shops, even in a church.
Now we head through the beautiful giant hills
to Spryside, which has one of Scotland's last barrel
workshops. It's called Spryside Cooperage (derived from Latin:
Barrel Maker). They get the barrels from all the distilleries, USA
(they get 6 more boards so volume fits) and Madeira. Everything is
happening at a frantic pace and they are not on the chord.
After being on the northernmost point of Scotland: John O 'Groates, we head west to Bettyhill, where we see a small museum in a closed church. It is mostly about the terrible migration of 1802-12, where Lord Sutherland replaced the residents of the area with sheep. This gives us the explanation for the huge amount of stone fences that are everywhere, in the otherwise inhospitable landscape.
He had 1.5 million archers, more than anyone
else in the entire British Empire! When Queen Victoria visited him,
she is told to have said: "I have left my house to visit you in your