Hello black pudding!
05.10.2012 - 05.10.2012
The day starts with a delicious breakfast, including our first black pudding experience. I admit I'm not the biggest fan, but Simon takes to it with gusto. Moira has a good ol' chat, and gives us a map - our first decent navigational aid of the trip, huzzah! Off we go to Stirling Castle, where all the staff are wearing green tartan pants and tartan ties... Just in case we'd forgotten we were in Scotland. Our tour guide is animated and passionate, and strongly dislikes the English. While learning about the Jameses (IV, V and VI) the recurring theme is that "it's good to be the king". Except that you have a fairly short life expectancy. And we learn that a Scottish pint is actually the equivalent of three English pints, which makes me very ashamed of my pot-drinking past. I redeem myself with a can of Irn-Bru at lunch time, and watch a primary school group ferociously attacking each other with swords and arrows bought from the gift shop.
On leaving Stirling Castle, there is a slight navigational error that sees us driving on the right road, but in the wrong direction. And since this road is the M9, just doing a u-turn is not an option. Boo. Eventually we manage to head north again, stop for an ice cream in Dunkeld (no racecourse to be seen) and eventually arrive in Newtonmore.
Dinner at the Letterbox is amazing - best meal of the trip. Lamb shank and aubergine cannoli - I'm in heaven! And it's complimented with a lovely bottle of Australian wine too, just for fun. I think I like Newtonmore!