Ireland/Britain 1998 day 22: Inverness


Passing the halfway point of my holiday, 11 February 1998 became my second vacation from vacation day. I slept late, and when I awoke I finally made it to the laundromat. Unlike Glasgow, the laundrette woman was cheerful and helpful. I also found a copying machine and a post office so I could send off the dispatch letters I was sending to all my friends (this is what we did before blogs).

The only site I took in that day was another brilliant museum The Balnain House Home of Highland Music. The exhibits included numerous video and audio stations with examples of Highland music of different styles and eras. My favorite part was the room with actual musical instruments for visitors to try out. Blowing a bagpipe is harder than it looks, and I could only make it produce a sickly moan. Two American woman Holly and Lori were there at the same time, and since they were studying music at college, they could make much nicer sounds on the instruments. Then we all jammed together playing “The Lion Sleeps Tonight.”

In the evening I tried to take the “haunted tour” of Inverness but no one was there. I wandered about the city looking for signs of nightlife but found nothing, so I returned to the hostel and was in bed by 8:30. I awoke in the wee hours and went to the lounge to write in my journal. There I met Richard, a drunken middle-aged Scotsman who worked at the hostel and attend a local college. He cheered my up with his friendliness and compliments, and just being an all-around good-hearted guy.

Learning that I wanted to visit Loch Ness he recommended Gordon’s Minibus Tour led by a local historian and biologist who takes his groups out of the van to hike around and study the flora. This sounded like just my type of thing so I thanked Richard for planning out my next day, and went back to bed.

Bagpipes

Be very happy that there’s no audio accompaniment to this photograph.

Bridge over River Ness

I loved the River Ness which rushed through the city with a glossy, reflective surface. The pedestrian bridge is rather bouncy which is either fun or terrifying depending on your temperament.

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