Rob Roy and the tour bus

Trip Start Oct 02, 2007
Trip End Dec 15, 2007

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Friday, November 30, 2007

5 Full days left. Figure I will do the best I can to make the most of the last few days I have.

I have been feeling a little 'under the weather' for the past few days, my tummy has been bothering me, nothing serious though, just the stress of getting ready to come home. Immediately after I left the hotel, my tummy felt yucky again. I journeyed on, but as the day wore on, it bothered me more and more. Its probably my diet, I sure hope tonight I can eat something better.

My first stop was the grocery store in Glencoe Village. Chatted with the clerk a bit, then continued along the road to find a memorial to those who died in World War 1. Walking back to my car, I noticed a sign for the massacre memorial, so I drove toward the memorial.  Wikipedia:  "The Massacre of Glencoe occurred in Glen Coe, Scotland, in the early morning of 13 February 1692, during the era of the Glorious Revolution and Jacobitism. The massacre began simultaneously in three settlements along the glen-Invercoe, Inverrigan, and Achacon-although the killing took place all over the glen as fleeing MacDonalds were pursued. Thirty-seven MacDonalds from the Clan MacDonald of Glencoe were killed by the guests who had accepted their hospitality, on the grounds that the MacDonalds had not been prompt in pledging allegiance to the new king, William of Orange. Another forty women and children died of exposure after their homes were burned."

I had decided this morning to stop short of Stirling, in Callander, then make the trek on Saturday to Carlisle. I had wrongly assumed that the distance between Glencoe Village and Callander amounted to 3-4 hours. Um...wrong :P 1 3/4 hours on a bad day. Knowing this as I headed south on A82, I decided to hit all the stops I could, the problem is, I had hit them all on Tuesday. And the kicker is that the weather was the same. No vistas shinning in the sun, no reflection off the waterfalls, just grey, rain and fog. I got a picture up the Glencoe mountain range (probably between Eagach and Bidean Nam Bian ranges) and better shots of Lock Ba (which I will post after I come home)

While I was taking pictures (yeah I was driving, eating a sandwich, and changing my clothes :) ), I came upon an accident, a lorry had all of its tires blown on one side of his trailer (4 axles or 8 tires) and the trailer was listing to one side (the wheels where off the edge of the road). Its hard to believe there wasn't a large mess. This is just my opinion, but the truck drivers in the UK are better drivers than in the rest of Europe and the USA, and they are more curtious too. I am really impressed how the lorry drivers could follow so close together (no more than 1 car length) at highway speeds.

About 10 miles outside of Callander, I see a small sign for Rob Roy's grave. Remembering the name but not the significance, I figured I should check it out. Down a winding single track road I find the grave site of Rob Roy (and many others-hey, its a cemetery). Walking around taking pictures of anything that looks cool (including Rob Roy's grave site), a tour bus shows up. About 30 mildly interested people shuffled out of the bus, happy to get out, but not pleased that its raining. Soon after, a limousine shows up and 3 important looking people get out. I thought to myself, lovely, people cluttering up my pictures. They milled about for 15 minutes generally clustering around the grave site of Rob Roy. I notice the driver walks around the church and cemetery looking for strays. He didn't appear to notice me at all, I wasn't dressed like his passangers at all (really I wasn't-I think I was wearing the same rain soaked clothes as I did the day before), so they left (I almost felt sorry for the passengers, almost is the key word here) A few minutes later, the limousine pulled away. I am glad I didn't go the tour bus way, I would have been very unhappy.

I talked to a utility worker at the church parking lot, he sees quite a few buses come through here every day, most stoping for 15 minutes, then going on to the next stop. He said most all the riders have the same look on their faces too, only rarely is someone really interested. Each day (Tuesday to Glasgow and Thursday/Friday) I see at least 6 tour buses from different companies taking the same route and stopping in the same places. How uninteresting.

I left the Rob Roy grave site and went into Callander. I had looked on-line this morning for a place to stay, however, I failed to write down the name. I found a great little B&B named Glen Garry B&B. I had a nice conversation with the owners daughter then a few hours later I chatted with the owner for 2 hours-telling stories of our travels (and of tarot readings too). The owners appear to have no problems with my dairy allergy for my morning meal. That evening, I went to an Indian resturant named Chillis II. Good food.

A little while after I arrived at the B&B, I left to explore a memorial, the Inchmahome Priori near the Port of Menteith. Unfortunately, the Priori was closed for the season, so I took a few pictures of the local parish church and its cemetary. One of the pictures I took was of a grave stone with a skull and cross bones on it. I had tried to wipe the dirt away at the bottom of the stone, but it didn't help. I have hope that I will be able to decipher it later to find out if its a hoax or someone's really grave stone.

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