Settling into Old Drynie House, our VRBO near Inverness, has been a real treat. Monster tulips exploding with colour, towering cedars watching over the property, acres of manicured lawns, trails for hiking, fields of wild bluebells, birds, and bird song, make for a delightful stay.
After a good sleep we woke to the sun working hard to melt the dew from the grass, warm the sleepy air and cause the birds to sing. A granola fuelled urge to head out and explore around Loch Ness sent us all to our rented car. Our host Alisdar spent the previous evening feeding us stories, maps and instructions on a great way to see the Loch. Our first stop was a rocky beach washed by waves which were completely ignored by the numerous folks willing to expose bare flesh from head to toe in this freezing cold ritual. This picture was taken by one of the ladies who had just emerged from the lake and encouraged us to try the ‘invigorating plunge’. A resounding ‘Are you crazy’ seemed not to dissuade her enthusiasm.
The stories of monsters from the deep are nowhere more refined than at Loch Ness. We were told of a fellow who has spent 30 years looking for Nessie and lives right on the beach. Here we are in front of his abode.
It was so fortunate that I had my camera ready at a moment just in case Nessie made an appearance. As I understand it, this is such a rare event that very few people have managed to capture an image of ‘The Loch Ness Monster’. Unfortunately the image is a bit hard to make out a full view of the head but nonetheless I was so excited to capture a piece of Scottish history.
As we wound our way around the loch we stopped at a few attractions.
A small waterfall that looked in need of a few inches of rain.
A stop at the locks on the Loch made John and Peter think of their sailing trip with Richard Drabble.
Some went to visit Urquhart Castle (very, very old!) while others went for a walk and I looked for birds.
A view over a beautiful valley by the castle.
A Great Tit singing for a mate.
A Wood Warbler with a great song.
A Common Chaffinch.
And a Hooded Crow to finish off the day.