On to the highlands...

Trip Start Oct 30, 2006
Trip End Aug 21, 2008

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Friday, October 5, 2007

 A four hour bus ride into the Highlands found Tara and I in Inverness, home to the Loch Ness Marathon.  No, we did not run the marathon, BUT, we did run the 5K fun run and it was actually fun.  We stayed in a little apartment about one mile from city centre, so not too bad of a walk.  Scotland is gorgeous and Inverness is no different.  We checked out the Inverness Castle which sits on the banks of the River Ness and is still used for some sort of government activity to this day.  After a little shopping and scouring for family heritgae heirlooms, we hit the pre-marathon pasta party to pick up our race day packets. 

The next morning's 20 min walk to the start of the race was a perfect warm up.   The race was pretty awesome.  We ran through the streets of Inverness, and I'm sad to say got passed up by a ridiculous amount of children.  I'm certainly not in the shape I thought I was!  My knee started hurting towards the end, but I pushed through and finished anyway.  It was so worth it and although not a super long distance, it still felt good to conquer those 5 kilometres!  We had already planned on visiting Loch Ness that afternoon, which in retrospect, might not have been such a great idea.  The 25 min bus ride turned into at least 45min seeing as how our bus stalled about 5 times!  I think it was out of gas, but we never got the full story.  The bus dropped us in a quaint (read: touristy) little town called Drumnadrochit.  Urqhart Castle sits on Loch Ness about 3miles WALK away from this town.  So, off we went.  At this point, my knee was really killing me, but I didn't want to come all this way and not see the darn castle!  No kidding...we got there less than FIVE MINUTES after the last tour left.  UGH!  So, all we could do was admire from afar. :(  By this point, Tara had to pee uber bad, but the dumn lady working the ticket counter had already locked the doors and wouldn't let her use the facilities even though I offered to pay the full price of a ticket!  She kept saying that there was a toilet 2 mins away and wouldn't listen when I told her we had walked there, not driven!  I'll say this about the Scots...nearly all that I encountered were wicked friendly.  She was the exception!  I was so angry with her!  So, we walked back to town and had dinner while we waited for the bus back to Inverness.  We didn't even get to see Nessie!  By the time I got off the bus, I could barely walk, so I told Tara she had two choices. 1) We take a taxi back to our apt....or.....2) We find a bar and drink until my knee didn't hurt anymore.  Thankfully she chose number two and we ended up at a pool hall.  We were 2 of exactly 4 females in the place.  The rest were guys playing in a poker tournament or watching what I gathered to be an important rugby match.  The rest of the night went on as planned.  I proceeded to get smashed, we hung out with some football players from Aberdeen, "borrowed" a glass pitcher of beer from the hall, and walked back to our apt.  Awesome night....next morning....not so much.  A quick clean-up and pack-up, taxi to the bus station, and one very hungover bus ride down to Edinburgh.  Ugh...I hope the apt owners enjoy the nice glass beer pitcher we left for them!
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