I had always thought that Melbourne’s weather was cheangeable, but it was nothing compared to a summer’s day in Skye. Our mountain outside our kitchen window changed from friendly to forbidding in an instant.
It is a rare day when Mr BG proposes to go for a walk up a mountain. I think he was under the assumption that the walk wouldn’t be as strenuous as what it turned out to be. We climbed Storr (715m) to see the Old Man of Storr with the kids pretty much setting the pace. And what a pace it was! We overtook a couple of groups climbing up, even with our regular rest breaks for water and refreshments. It was a mad scramble on rocks at the top but the view from the top and the sense of achievement was definitely worth it. I am already planning
my next shopping trip to get some good hiking boots our next trip to the Grampians for some more walks in the mountains when we get back home.
We headed off the island again to Dornie where there is the castle off Eilean Donan. If it looks familiar, it’s probably because it’s one of the more popular castles to visit when you’re in the Highlands, and one which is likely to appear in photographs and tins of Scottish shortbread. It was one of the busier tourist spots we encountered with quite a few tour buses in the car park and tourists hailing from Spain, Italy, German, England, Ireland and us!
The history of the castle was quite enlightening, initially a stronghold against the Vikings, later becoming a military post which was sacked by the locals. It was in ruins from the early 18th century until 1932, when it was rebuilt- not according to the last surveyed plans of the castle in 1714, but according to a dream. Additional features of gothic turrets were added, making it less an authentic castle and more a romantic idea of what Walter Scott and the subsequent tourists would have liked a castle to be like. Mr BG was a tad gutted, and a bit cheated.
And then suddenly, it was time to go. We said goodbye to our little house, to Daisy the black and white cat and to the sheep that flocked around the roadsides. A few tears may have been shed, and the kids both said ‘Bye Skye!’ totally unprompted as we boarded the ferry.