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.
find another circle of standing stones, with a so-called recumbent
(lying) stone. This arrangement was used by the farming community five
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,
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
We take a stroll in the dunes and look towards the south where it is possible to see Aberdeen in the distance.
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
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.
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,
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.