The last stop on our Ireland - Scotland tour is the area north of Aberdeen and Aberdeen itself, called Grampian. On our way we stop in a small town to have coffee, and there is also a shop that specialises in typical traditional Scottish short bread. What a sight for a short bread fan like Else. But we haven't forgotten the past. On our way we still find interesting examples of standing stones. The one above to the right, a Pictish slab of pink granite from the ninth century, is called the Maiden Stone. A local legend tells the following story: The Maiden of Drumdurno made a wager with a stranger that she could bake a firlot of meal before he could build a road to the top of Benachie. The stranger was the Devil and finished the road before the bread was ready. The maiden fled and as the Devil caught her, she uttered a prayer to God. At once she was turned into stone, but the place where the Devil’s hand touched her shoulder is still marked by the triangular cleft in the stone. True or not? A funny story that adds to the experience.
We find another circle of standing stones, with a so-called recumbent (lying) stone. This arrangement was used by the farming community five thousand years ago to measure the precision of the moon to help predict the time of sowing. Else uses it to appear very impressive as it also makes a good position for an important speech.
Yet another Pictish stone from between the 5th and the 9th centuries, a so-called symbol stone. On its left side is a long but incomplete inscription in ogham, an ancient alphabet. It reads IRATADDORARENS, which has been linked with Eddarnon, St Etheranus, a local saint (If you are interested in language there are more pictures from the same stone in the Picasa section at the bottom). At last we reach the east coast of Scotland. How very different from the west coast: Large dunes with lyme grass; a bit like the west coast of Jutland. 
We take a stroll in the dunes and look towards the south where it is possible to see Aberdeen in the distance.
We have planned to stay the same place for the last two nights. Grampian, however, not being a tourist area because of its lack of spectacular tourist views, does not have that many B&B's. But we find a lovely little hotel with a good restaurant. However, they can only accomodate us for one night, so esarly the next day we find a B&B 20 miles away.
From the garden of this B&B, however, there is something that comes close to a highland view. We have decided to spend our last day in Scotland in Aberdeen, and it turns out to be quite easy to find our way into the centre and park our car.
Else is not that enthusiastic about Aberdeen, but as I walk around I find many nice and attractive areas. I also happen to witness the celebrations of university graduates, posing before cameras. And in front of the building to the left, 'His Majesty', there are a lot of people, getting ready for the ceremonies and celebrations. All this below the bold and corageous eyes of William Wallace, the guardian of Scotland.
And of course this all happens to the sound of pipe music. A young woman is able to match the noise of the traffic and attract the attention. A relative celebrates the day by wearing a kilt, and many of the others are in the lovely park on the other side of the street.