Great Scot! More than one ‘Clan’ comes together – 2nd Outlandish Adventure Day 2

This blog may be even shorter than yesterday. Much of that may be because I slept like the dead from the time I finished last night’s blog post until almost 10 am this morning. I finally did drag myself out of bed, feeling very much refreshed, just in time to grab breakfast in the hotel restaurant with Deborah. After that, we packed our stuff and checked out.

I dropped Deb off at her car and then headed north to Pitlochry. That will be my home base for the weekend before heading back to Glasgow next week. Sitting down in comfort, I did a quick technology check to make sure all was working for the all important Outlander viewing in the morning. After some fiddling, everything appears to be working but I’ll keep my fingers crossed until morning, just in case.

Tech check done, I performed a quick wardrobe change and headed across the mountain from Pitlochry to Crieff.  It was a lovely drive through misty rain. Hopefully I’ll get a chance to take some pictures and post them. After a 45 minute drive, I arrived at the lovely Crieff Hydro — a Victorian built hotel and spa. I very quickly started running into friends, old and new, all there for the Outlandish UK Gathering.

Pretty soon it was time for dinner, but first, there was a very special pre-dinner entertainment. None other that Outlander world-famous street musicians Clanadonia, fresh from the streets of Glasgow. All the attendees gathered round to watch — and some ended up becoming part of the performance — as the band rocked the venue.  After several rousing numbers, Clanadonia ended with their smash hit ‘Hamsterheid’– a smash hit partly in that it was featured during the chase scene in Episode 101 – Sassenach.

At this point, many of you have probably noticed something missing in this blog post…pictures. I accidentally left my cell phone in the car and didn’t have it to take pictures with this evening. But don’t worry, I’ll have both the phone and my camera to take pics tomorrow. I can’t wait to see what the Outlandish UK Gathering organizers have in store for us. I’m already pretty sure my credit card balance won’t be safe after shopping at the Outlander Fayre!

In the meantime, do enjoy this video I made of Clanadonia that I was able to make with my handy Surface 3. I sure wish the quality was better but you’ll get the feel. 😦


After a lovely buffet dinner, the Outlander clan settled in for some Outlandish Trivia. 5 rounds later, three tables were engaging in a tie-breaker for the overall win, but alas, my table was not among them. Why couldn’t I remember William Ransom’s FULL name and title. 😉 Knowing I had a bit of a drive and an early call tomorrow morning, I headed out for home.

In the car, I marveled that even so late in the evening it wasn’t quite dark yet. Pretty sure the sun will be up very early tomorrow (as will I). I made my way back across the Sma’ Glen, keeping a sharp eye out for rabbits, deer and other cars. Have to tell you that the rabbits far outnumbered the other 2. Arrived home safe and sound and now ready to catch some sleep before my very early alarm goes off.

More to come tomorrow!

Slàn leat àn-drasta!



Reverence and Remembrance… Scotland Day 11

Woke up early this morning and had a brief Skype with Mom as she was up way too late. I captured a beautiful view of the light dawning over the loch next to the house. I eventually wandered downstairs to make myself some tea and eat breakfast. It’s so wonderful to be staying somewhere with a kitchen. Thanks Susan!

WP_20141013_08_33_23_ProBefore too long, Candida and I were ready to hit the road. On today’s agenda was Culloden Battlefield and Clava Cairns. We also had plans to meet up with Lisa, one of the Inverness Outlanders I wasn’t able to meet last week. On the A9 north, we drove through periods of sun, clouds and mist—you know, typical Scottish weather whiplash. By the time we reached Culloden though, the weather seemed to have settled into a period of sun. It was however the coldest day of the trip so far.

At Culloden, we paid our parking and admission fees and headed into the exhibition area of the Visitors’ Centre. The displays of artifacts and explanations of events were very good. I was also glad to have the chance to practice my Gàidhlig comprehension a bit more. (I even managed to try some pronunciations under my breath.) The most moving of the exhibits by far though was the Battlefield Experience. Continue reading

My Heart’s in the Highlands…Scotland Day 10

I woke up this morning already feeling sad that it was my last day in Wigtown. We had such a fun time this weekend. Anyone reading this blog who comes to Scotland simply must make time to come and visit Deb and Andrew at Hillcrest House. After another scrumptious breakfast, we all sat at the breakfast table and talked until it was time for tea and sweets all over again. It doesn’t get much better than that! Eventually, though, we had to break up the party. After a few last-minute photos, Candida and I hit the road for Pitlochry by way of Caerlaverock Castle.

Once more on the road, we made our way through the Galloway countryside, eventually passing through New Galloway —childhood home of one Sam Heughan. After more than an hour, we had made our way through Dumfries and arrived at Caerlaverock Castle. Caerlaverock is famous for falling after siege to Edward I (also known as Longshanks). The siege was well documented in a poem as we learned in the short presentation we viewed before walking down to the castle. Other distinguishing characteristics of Caerlaverock are that it is triangular shaped—unique in the British Isles—and that it is a 13th century castle shell with a 17th Century mansion built inside. As per her usual habit, Candida climbed all over inspecting nooks and crannies. I think it’s the writer in her—always looking for details she can use later!

Finished with our visit, we hit the motorway and headed for Pitlochry, our base for the next few days. After several hours on the road, we finally arrived in Pitlochry to find it crawling with people there to attend the Enchanted Forest light show. Ever the hostess in the know, Susan recommended that we go for dinner at the local golf course as most of the places in town would be full. Candida and I eagerly headed that way, realizing that we hadn’t eaten since breakfast. The golf course and restaurant were situated on the top of a hill with a lovely view of the mountains. Candida and I spent the time waiting for dinner catching up on some social media. It just doesn’t pay to get too far behind. 😉 Eventually we were served our delicious dinners. Fish and chips for Candida and Fisherman’s Basket for me.

Full once more,we headed to the local food co-op to stock up on some staples for the next few days. One great benefit of having a house is having a kitchen to make tea and breakfast. Groceries bought, we headed back to the house to settle in for the next few days. This is normally where I would tell you our plans for tomorrow but, in all honesty, we haven’t decided for sure. If the weather is nice, we may go to Culloden and Clava Cairns. I must say, as much as I enjoyed my time in the southwest of Scotland, I’m happy to be seeing the Highlands once more.

Slàn leat an-dràsta! (goodbye for now)