Bass Rock

Hello, my friends.  How are you guys today?  I’ve missed you.  I have been away on holiday with Mr. C and his parents, off the grid and making memories.  But I’m back now, ready to catch up on all the things you’ve been up to and eager to share some of the best moments from our trip.  For today, though, I’d like to show you a tiny island located in the outer part of Scotland’s Firth of Forth, where the river meets the North Sea.  This island is called Bass Rock and it is a beast of a thing!

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Rising to a height of more than 300 feet, the rocky island is a steep-sided volcanic plug that dates to the Carboniferous Age – arising a whopping 300+ million years ago.  At a distance, the surface of the rock can appear white, almost as if covered in a dusting of snow.  This is because of the presence of the world’s largest colony of Northern gannets.  In fact, in the peak of their nesting season, it is estimated that more than 150,000 of these sea birds call Bass Rock home!

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Elie, Scotland

Hi, Friends!  I’m so glad you stopped by today.  Hope you are having a lovely weekend.

I have been reflecting back on a few of the Scottish villages that Mr. C and I only saw a peek of but that someday deserve a second look.  Elie is one of those places.  I can’t help but feel that we somehow missed the boat on this one.

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Located on the Firth of Forth in the East Neuk of Fife, Elie is a popular and picturesque seaside village that was established in the 16th century.  It became a Burgh of Barony in 1589 and as such, was under the control of the Lairds of Ardross – landowners who held their estates directly from The Crown.  The Lairds were in control of the town council and court and therefore, the villagers were dependent upon these men in matters of trade.  (Burghs were abolished in 1975.)

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Sailing Takes Me Away

Hello again, my friends.  Are you all having a nice weekend?  I sure am.  Just when My Plaid Heart thought it couldn’t physically handle another weekend of Virginia temperatures in the mid-upper 90’s, Mother Nature has finally thrown us a bone.  It is GLORIOUS outside with early fall-like temps, lower humidity, and a nice, cool breeze.  It’s short-lived, though.  Pity that the dreadful temperatures are set to return next week.  Pity indeed.

In keeping with the aforementioned cool breeze, I’d like to invite you to come along with me today as we set sail on the brackish waters of the estuary that meets the North Sea – the Firth of Forth.

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Inchcolm Abbey

Hi Friends,

Did everyone had a nice weekend?  I spent mine planting lots of pretty pink flowers, eating delicious food, visiting with family and friends, and writing a word or two.  The long Memorial Day holiday is almost over and tomorrow it’s back to business as usual.

In today’s blog post, I’d like to point out a really interesting site located on the island of Inchcolm in the Firth of Forth (the estuary off Scotland’s east coast that flows into the North Sea).  Mr. C and I first spotted the structure from the grounds of Lauriston Castle in Edinburgh.

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As viewed from Lauriston Castle.

We had no idea what we were looking at that day and assumed it was a castle ruin.  It wasn’t until we chartered a sailing tour of the Firth (a blast – more on that in a future post) that we saw this remarkable structure in clearer view.  Turns out it was Inchcolm Abbey, the most well-preserved group of monastic buildings in Scotland.

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Enchanting Crail

Greetings everyone,

How do you spell the word enchanting?  That’s easy.

C R A I L.

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Wouldn’t you agree?  I would say that Crail is my imagination come to life, but actually it was my jigsaw puzzle that came to life!

20171119_170010Just ninety miles to the northeast of Edinburgh, Scotland where the Firth of Forth and the North Sea meet, lies the picturesque, historic fishing village of Crail.  Several of these old, charming fishing villages dot the coastline along this northeast corner of the Kingdom of Fife.  In my opinion, Crail is one of the prettiest.  Once a hub for the export of such commodities as fish, salt, mutton, and wool to mainland Europe, Crail Harbor still maintains itself in small capacity as a working harbor today, well-known for its fresh shellfish.

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The Bridges of the Firth of Forth

The wheels on American Airlines, Flight 6404 gracefully departed the Edinburgh, Scotland runway and we rapidly ascended into the sky on the path towards home. Always a bit of a nervous flier, I tried my best to relax and breathe while our aircraft climbed ever higher.  I leaned my head back against my seat and tried to focus my mind on the wonderful memories of the previous two weeks.

Still ascending, our pilot banked a left turn.  My husband quickly turned my attention to the window where I caught sight of the massive Forth bridges rising out of the water below.  As if on cue, the floodgates opened as the realization finally hit me that I was being carried far away from the place that I love so much.

20170922_163941I stink when it comes to goodbyes.  It makes no difference if the thing I’m goodbye-ing is a person or a place.  My eyes will inevitably leak.  And, of course, my cry is never a dainty, pretty cry.  It’s quite the opposite.  As someone who normally keeps her emotions in check, this snotty outburst always renders me red, puffy, and embarrassed.  My tears on the flight that day were no exception.

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