The chronicles of the Lord of the Sheep. Back to Scotland.

Background of the Lord of The sheep… : The values of the world have been lost in the darkness of the actions of humanity. People are behaving like sheeps. However, along time ago, sheeps had a free life full of joy and of enjoyment of their territory. Places where no man had ever set a foot. It was the time of the Lord of the Sheeps. The human beings made the sheep their slave but in their doing, they lost their soul and became sheep themselves though keeping their human appearance. :O)

In quest of identity and attracted by those high lands, the wanderer who came from the south started his adventure heading towards the city of Edinburgh. During a ride of three hours on his mount, called the Nissan Mikrak, he went through the region of Cumbria and the Scottish Borders, before he reached the east coast of Scotland. The wanderer was hosted on the evening of Friday by a member of the CounchSurfing named Dave. The wanderer and Dave had already met before and get along quite well. On Saturday morning, the Couchsurfing’s festival  started with a speed-friending session : it consists in chatting for three minutes with an unknown person. Within half an hour you can have a rough idea about 10 people and this makes the communication easier during the rest of the festival. After the speed-friending, highlands games were organised which basically consisted in throwing away pieces of tree trunks. The wanderer did not participate to this activity since he felt like a tree trunk himself. After the games, the people gathered in the periphery of the city to enjoy a BBQ. Since it was raining, the BBQ took place at one entrance of a long pedestrian tunnel. People brought food, alcohol, enjoyed and played frisbee in the tunnel.  In the evening we had a party in one of Edinburgh’s nightclub. The wanderer especially enjoyed dancing (or rather shaking his body).  On Sunday morning, a Scottish breakfast was organised in a nice pub in the modern part of the city. Those kinds of pub which look like places where blue bloods used to gather themselves centuries ago. Nowadays, all public are welcome and the food has changed too, may be not in a good way. For sure, this Scottish breakfast contained a lot of energy which the wanderer needed for the rest of trip. He packed up, say good bye, see you some days and carried on to the road of Inverness to the North, places where tales and legends were notorious.

The three hours road was calm and only a few cloudbursts went to bear company to the traveller. On the way, the wanderer noticed advertisements for something called « rockness ».  This was the famous Lochness’s annual rock music festival which gather hundreds of camping tents and thousands of people. However, the wanderer who was now in quest of calm and authenticity decided not to attend to this massive musical grazing and carried his way to a camping site located near the ruins of the castle of Urquhart along the Loch Ness. The camping was rather cold and wet in the morning but it was surrounded by a farm with beautiful horses. During the dinner, not only the wanderer was eating his meal but he was also himself the meal of some of the most terrific creatures : the midges which are tiny flying skin-biter blood-suckers. This was one of the toughest obstacle, the wanderer would have to overcome during his trip. Unlike the sheep, the wanderer was not well prepared to live in those conditions and did not have a thick and warmth woollen covering to protect him from the numerous bites of his invisible attackers. He managed to eat a parsimonious meal and went to « bed » carefully avoiding to be trapped in the tents with the nasty flies. On Monday’s morning, he visited the ruins of the castle nearby. The atmosphere was mystical, the water was calm and the fog was lingering above the Loch.  The visit of the castle and its museum was very interesting and one thing which kept the attention of the wanderer was the link between this castle and the Scottish clan of the McDonalds. The McDonalds clan is on the most famous Scottish clan. Their chief the Lord of the Isles (Isles on the west coast) was one of the most powerful in Scotland. Using viking-like boats he threatens villages, stole everything and killed many. The McDonalds occupied the  Urquhart castle but one day the Scottish government decided to cancel their right of clan and to destitute them from their possesssion. Though the McDonalds did not live in the castle any more, they kept on raiding it to steal its richness each year for 50 years… Just stop one minute and picture yourself, the life of the fellow who was born in the village near the castle at the beginning of the raids. For all his life (given the life expectancy at this time), each year, he faced the invasion, the robbery, the murderers and the fatality on his shoulders because of the actions of the Mcdonalds clan. For the case of this fellow, we can imagine that the concept of happiness, hope and joy was quite relative and vague… Those reflections pushed the wanderer to get more information about the Mcdonalds clan, he heard rumours that they based some of their forces on the Isle of Skye.

The wanderer aimed at this destination and reached the casle of Elidonean just located before the bridge leading to the Isle.

I have changed my mind, I stop writing this sheeps story. It takes too much time and I have better to do! I depict below in few words the rest of my trip.

The castle of Elidonean is very nice since it was rebuilt. THen I took the bridge to the Isle of Skye. I drove up to Portree in the North of the Isle. This Isle is amazing and I wish I could spend more time there. I had a greater feeling of being in wild lands compared to the beginning of my trip. After visitng Portree (lovely small bay where the boats stay), I did a hike (actually two small hikes, on in the hills and another on the beach with a great cliff). Then I found a great camping site in Staffin. On the next day, I keep on drving along on the coast and I visited : a castle in ruins, the top of new cliffs where there is small house where you can sleep for free (it is like a shelter in the mountains), I saw a nice coral beach and then I went to sleep in a camping in the middle of the peaks of the isle (many hikers were there). On the next day I head towards Armadale to take the Ferry with my car to Mallaig. Before taking the Ferry I visited a great mystical, ecological, protected wood and I visited another castle where i learned a lot of things about the Mcdonalds Clan. After the Ferry I reached Fort William and spend my last night there (take the coastal road from Mallaig to Fort William, it is beautiful). For the last day: i walked 1350 m up to Ben NEvis (highest peak in the UK) and I finally drove 5 hours to Lancaster where my bed was still waiting for me and I should say that after sleeping on a rough ground for a few days, I embraced my bed as the sunshine embraces the skin of beautiful girls.

Scotland is close to France and you can rent a car easily. Do not worry about driving on the left since as soon as you got wild places like the Isle of Skye the road is only wide enough for one car! This was a short summary of my trip and I did not depicted all the details such as the night where two drunk Scottish guys went back to their tent close to mine and sang anti-England songs for one hour… That is the real trip! See you in Scotland !

PS1 : this trip made me so relax, peaceful though I was alone. At the end and given what I learned about the history of the Scottish clans, I made a big choice for the rest of my life: not to go in a Mcdonalds restaurant any more… :p

PS2: The photos are on my Facebook album called « Road trip to Scotland »

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