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Every trip leaves tracks in the mind, memories that slowly fray around the edges. I was surprised that the people of Scotland were, on the whole, so short. I was amused that every time I heard a mother call or reprimand a child, his name was inevitably Alastair or Conor. I was more apprehensive about riding in vehicles on the "wrong" side of the road than I thought I would be; using my own neck muscles and mindpower to keep the buses from tipping off the edges of cliffs and from whamming into oncoming traffic that was on the wrong side, in the wrong lane, OMG!

To me, Scotland will forever be a green and mountainous memory, a rolling landscape of hill and water with purple patches and castles galore and fern forests and cliffside pathways. It was relaxing to be in a country where everyone spoke English, where all the signs were in English (although many were also in Gaelic), where the bookstores were filled with English books. I've missed that more than I realized, no matter my fluency in Swedish.

(All the images are slightly fuzzy because I've fudged the sizes so they'll fit inside my journal layout. Click on any photo to enlarge. All photographs copyright Anders Ek)

There was a Cow Parade in Edinburgh while we were there, although I really thought sheep would have been more appropriate. Above, the children are pointing out the area where we the Cowgate, of course! When Edinburgh was a walled city, it was where the animals came in and out from the pastures and for many years it was the worst slum area in town.

We managed to see a lot of castles during our journey, although we didn't always pay the entrance fee to go in, from Holyrood and Edinburgh at either end of the Royal Mile, to Urquhart overlooking Loch Ness (above), the ruins of Dunollie and Dunstaffnage, and the refurbished glories of Torosay and Duart. I was impressed with the care and thoughtfulness that went into the castle exhibitions and tours and fell in love with the muraled artwork in the Scottish Regalia exhibition in Edinburgh castle. I am still sorry that no photographs were allowed inside, or I would have spent several hours just taking pictures of the paintings.

Below, a sign in Tobermory that made us laugh out loud. Didn't know THAT was the reason why pubs are so popular in Scotland!

Scotland Photo Galleries (Lots of goodies here, including REAL LIVE GUARANTEED-NOT-A-HOAX LOCH NESS MONSTER SHOTS, NO REALLY, I SWEAR!): Page 1, Page 2, Page 3, Page 4, Page 5

Really Great Writing Out There Right Now: Best Things to Steal
mood: pleased
music: Indigo Girls—Collecting You


It all looks terribly, terribly lovely. Though it feels a touch strange sometimes to see pictures where the resemblance to Oregon is striking -- it's only the age and style of the buildings that gives away it's true location.


I think Alastair is the funniest - in a good way - name. I really do like it, but I am a closet Anglophile. Or maybe not so closet.

You are a freaking awesome photographer, Liz! What wonderful pictures! And I really do like the Scottish names, the towns, etc. So full and rich, and very exotic to this American surrounded by burgs and lands. :)

p.s. The kids are breathtakingly beautiful, as always.

You're a sweetie :) Anders took most of the photos (I took the one of the rocks and the family on the beach. Karin actually took the one of Martin and Anders on the Esplanade).

Wow, she is a good photographer!

(no subject) - (Anonymous)

Anders had over 1 GIG of photos! It's insane, really, how many you can take (and keep) with a digital camera.

The seagull was quite cool, actually. It was hovering in the airstream just above his head within touching distance for over half an hour on upper deck of the ferry from Mull back to Oban. By the time Martin came back down to fetch me to come see, he had stopped and was perched on a post just over our heads just checking everyone below him out. :)

and how the heck have you managed to cut off a fingertip? Did I miss something?? Is this a new injury? OW!

Terrific pictures, good narrative. For some reason I loved the shot of the rocks very much - I'm envious of your talent for lovely photographs! I hope by "copywrite" you don't mean that I can't save an image to my computer. If so, let me know, 'cause I nabbed the beatiful one of you and your family. I keep a file with all of my online friends and browse through it occassionally to keep names matching faces.

And holy moly, I can't believe you actually saw the monster of Loch Ness!! Amazing shot, really :D

Yes, you can save our photos! You just can't publish them as your own :)

And thanks for the comment about the rocks photo. I took a dozen, and my husband thinks I'm insane :D

Wonderful photos. In all my previous times in the UK, I never made it to Scotland, I can see I'm going to have to remedy that once I'm moved. It's interesting, in Ireland it's "craic", but said crack, I love actually seeing the intermingling of words.

I've never made it to Ireland myself, it's next on my list after Prague :) And there are still so many places I want to see in the UK! I've only been to London and Chester, plus 1 weekend in Wales. Not enough! There just isn't enough time.

Oh, and in England, there's still my favorite DON'T MISS cities of Canterbury, Gloucester, York and Bath, and then there's Avebury and Cornwall and .....

i really enjoyed all the photos liz! and WOW..that seagull picture is great!!

He was so close Anders said he could have reached out and touched him :)

They're gorgeous, I'm glad you had a lovely time!

It's lucky that the seagull didn't poop on Anders' head!

Great, great pictures! Thanks for sharing them with us.

I know I say this everytime--

but EVERY time I see a photo of your whole family together I have to say DAMN, woma-- that is one beautiful family!!!!!

And, loved the pic of the pub sign!


gorgeous pics!
i love your beach rocks, and the plaster silhouette, and the sunset. and the ones with YOU in them, of course. :-)


Had your kids heard about the Loch Ness Monster before you got there?


Re: Scotland

Yep, they had, although I'm not sure from where. :)


what a lovely family picture!

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lizardek's obiter photos
lizardek's obiter photos

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I can complain because rose bushes have thorns or rejoice because thorn bushes have roses.

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