Scotland/Ireland 2017 – #08

[Categories: Travel, Photography, Photography 101 Forever]
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It is the next day from yesterday.  (Are you keeping with me?  Thu. 27 Apr. if not.)  We travel from Ballachulish (Balla-HOO-lish) to Belfast today by way of the Western Highlands and the Robert Burns Museum in Ayr near Alloway.

“Bags out at 6:45am” is the common refrain.  Our bags are transported to and from our room by hotel staff at every place we stay.

The mountains of Scotland are desolately beautiful.  I can see myself …reading… here. And walking.  Lots and lots of walking.  It is quiet and I feel our big, half-full bus is imposing on the landscape.  It is certainly not unseen.  I’m grateful there are not ten or twenty other buses, such as seen at the more popular tourist sites.  We see walkers and backpackers throughout our Highlands drive.  And a train.  You can travel a lot by train here.

We pause by the quiet village of Luss for a pit stop and walkabout:

Re: Loch Lomond, per Wikipedia: “Of all the lochs and lakes in Great Britain, it is the largest by surface area and the second largest (after Loch Ness) by water volume.”

We stop at The Robert Burns Birthplace Museum in Alloway, Ayrshire for lunch and a visit.  There are beautiful gardens and monuments, including the inspirational Brig o’ Doon, bridge over the River Doon.

I bought a small book of Burns poetry.  Burns wrote in Scottish dialect, which I find captivating.  My favorite is “Tae a Moose, on Turning Her Up in Her Nest with the Plough”[1] (English: “To a Mouse”) from which we have the corruption ‘the best laid plans of mice and men oft go astray’.  Here are a few snippets:

Wee, sleekit, cow’rin, tim’rous beastie,
O, what a panic’s in thy breastie!
Thou need na start awa sae hasty,
Wi’ bickering brattle!
I wad be laith to rin an’ chase thee,
Wi’ murd’ring pattle!  …

But, Mousie, thou art no thy lane,
In proving foresight may be vain;
The best-laid schemes o’ mice an’ men
Gang aft agley,
An’ lea’e us nought but grief an’ pain,
For promis’d joy!

The book includes a glossary/translator thank goodness.

Ruins… are strewn… in the countryside (ah the stories they could tell) as we make our way to Cairynryan, Scotland where a large ferry will take us to Larne, Northern Ireland and a short bus ride into Belfast for the next two nights’ stay.

Will we find ‘the troubles’ in Belfast?  (You know, Sinn Fein, the IRA, all that.)  We shall see…

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About JohnRH

Retired, avid winter skier, avid reader, traveler (avidly). :)
Gallery | This entry was posted in EUROPE, Ireland, Photography, Photography 101 Forever, Scotland, Travel, Travel photography and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Scotland/Ireland 2017 – #08

  1. You are right John, those gardens are stunning – as is that gorgeous little bridge – too beautiful.

    • JohnRH says:

      Thank you Sue and thanks for stopping by as always. We love gardens and the English/Scottish/Irish are as adept as those around the world at the practice. The Brig o’ Doon is perhaps more meaningful to those older and American not unlike myself who are somewhat familiar with the Broadway musical and movie Brigadoon which is set in the Scottish Highlands and ‘possibly’ named for this bridge. The musical includes the Broadway-familiar song “It’s Almost Like Being In Love”. Wikipedia enlightens: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brigadoon .

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