Thursday, August 24, 2006
My Summer Holiday - Part 1, Scottish Stuff
THIS is the approach to Fingal's Cave on the Island of Staffa. As you can see a number of us wore yellow oilskins because there was more water flying into the boat than going under it. One man is being sick inside the boat. The other man is about to be sick outside the boat.
So, Scotland is excellent on the whole. It has a good lot of bridges and boatrides and caves and an altogether buzztastic boatlift called, The Falkirk Wheel (more of which later). On the down side it has way too many old churches and gardens you pay to go into (how mad is that) and bagpipes of course.
You might be excited to know that we stayed in youth hostels. I was definitely excited because this meant I got to sleep in a bunk bed and The Parents did too. Dad moaned about not sleeping properly and then moaned about someone pinching his Special K cereal from the communal kitchen and then moaned and groaned on the coachdrive across Mull (mind you he was sitting next to a baby-child who threw up at least three times into a see through plastic bag). The driver took 1 hour and twenty minutes to reach the port on the far side of the island. After the second lot of sick Dad asked for the windows to be opened but the driver refused because he said, 'it will rain and there are cattle about'. Were the cattle going to poke their heads in through the open windows and feed on us? That's what my dad asked but the driver said something back in a foreign language and even I could tell he was not being nice to his customers. By the time we got to Fionnport it was actually pouring with rain and the driver said 'told you so' to dad as he stepped out of the bus and into a cowpat.
The journey across to Staffa was like the best water ride at Alton Towers and then some more. We actually BOUNCED all the way. The captain told anyone who was not a good sailor to sit ouside. There were even some giant yellow capes called oilskins to put on, so it was just like being inside my own little room for me but Dad does not like getting his beard wet so he stayed in the fume filled cabin and missed all the bouncing fun. I leapt off at the tiny island wanting to look inside Fingal's Cave but had to wait for Mum to help Dad off the boat. He looked greyer than normal and refused to run or even get up for a good ten minutes. This was very frustrating as the other people on the boat raced ahead along the basalt cliffs to get in the cave before we did. It was worth the wait. The cave is extreme, formed fast from volcanic rock it is tall and thin with bashing waves echoing inside the cliffs and visitors having to cling to the rocky sides because there is no barrier between a the narrow slippery ledge and a long drop to a watery death. Cool.
Nobody fell off the edge and the trip to Iona was less bouncy and dad spent less time in the in the toilet and more time telling me what fun I was having. So back to normal.