In Search of Nessie

Saturday, May 14, 2005

Inverness is a quiet town
Another change in plans, I stayed in Inverness today and skipped over Glasgow, because my bus got here too late yesterday for me to even get to the Loch. It's a small city, 40,000 people or so, and not much to see, so yesterday, I just kind of walked around and looked at stuff. I checked into a phone (because it'd be nice for calling home and booking hostels) but apparently there's no reasonably priced way to do that.

Last night we went out to a pub called Hootenany's with Celtic music downstairs (a really good time) and some decent though not good rock bands (put it this way, they had piano but also a wah-wah pedal). We didn't stay for the headliners, Girl Said No, but saw their soundcheck and weren't really impressed anyway. We wandered out of there and into a pub that was in a tiny close (what they call alleys here). There was a 50-something year old guy was playing Dylan, Cash, and other covers, and he did a really good job of interacting with everyone too. People there were in good spirits. And man, oh man, you should've seen this Spanish girl dancing.

Loch Ness from above
Anyway, today I was up early (6AM) because I had a jet-lag fuelled four hour nap the night before, and then I went biking up to Loch Ness to see Ogopogo's cousin. I'm rooming here at the Eastgate hostel (pretty nice, £10/night) with a couple of Germans and so the three of us undertook this undertaking. It was a 29-mile bike up into the mountains, which gave some amazing scenery and a nice look at the smaller communities in Scotland which reminded me of Greek villages a little.

Urquhart Castle
Needless to say, I was NOT in shape for this largely uphill venture, and I felt bad because I was behind my German counterparts for most of the ride. My legs will be nice and sore tomorrow. It took us about four hours to get to Drumnadrochit where Urquhart Castle is, and while it is easily the most pain I've experienced in a long time, it was worth it for the views. I hope the pictures do it justice. However, with it having taken so long, and mostly with the three of us being so tired, we knew we'd never make it back before nightfall, ESPECIALLY with the crazy highway that we had to ride on for awhile. No shoulder at all, and the cop/various drivers got rather ticked at us riding into traffic, though the cop did understand the point that we could at least see who was coming at us. Nonetheless, he made us switch sides. So, without digressing further, we were very lucky to run across a nice bus driver who stowed our bikes in the luggage area against policy. Largely because the bus was empty.

Tomorrow, I'm taking a train down to London, 1:30 to 9:30 or something to that effect. The plane is £40 more expensive and I'm in London for five days already, so I'm not in a particular rush, plus then I get to see some of the countryside. And it beats the 14 hour bus ride, thank-you.

I'll be in London for five days, and maybe I can upload some pics there. See you then!


the_dutch said...

I really enjoyed reading this.

I like how you always mention the ladies you are checking out. LOL. You have no shame at all, my man.


Dean said...

Heh, thanks Dutch. I try my best to be shameless solely for entertainment purposes. :) Getting ready for the big move?