Today, I was moving on to Edinburgh and Mari-Anne's flat.
And with no rush to leave Inverness, I had a few final visits to make. Firstly the Post Office to shed some of my load. It was time to be ruthless. Maps, clothes and anything else I could live without was posted home, as the Rucksack felt mightily heavy after the lightweight day bag. I also got my "End to End" Passport stamped by a very impressed assistant.
Then to the Inverness Museum. I wanted to try and understand, just what had made these Highlanders such a strong fearsome bunch, and how did all this Clan business start?Well clearly, the early Picts (painted) people had to work hard to make a living in the Highlands, and probably had to fight for every fertile scrap of land they could. But after hearing all these tales about the fairer sex I reckon this is how it all began...
"One cold night, in a remote settlement, the menfolk were sitting around the fire complaining about their "Other Half's" "All she ever does is nag, nag, nag, do this, do that...and every single day I get a clip round the ear for drinking more than my recommended daily units of alcohol. I tell you I need a break" The others all nodded sympathetically. Then one of them had a bright idea. "Hey, why don't we go and pick a fight with the next village? It'll take us at least four days to get there and back, and with a couple of days fighting, that's nearly a week!" "Great idea Reg!" said another " But how will we know we're not killing each other?" "Yea, good point, what we need is a common identity. I know, I'll get the Missus to rustle up some kilts, that will keep her busy. Now, what about colour? Personally, I think blue, with a splash of red, is rather fetching"... and off they dashed to pack the crates with enough alcohol to last for at least a month.
On the road towards Dunkeld, all the interesting places, i.e. places to get refreshments and facilities like Ballinluig and Dowally were all on the other side of the A9. The cycle track was quieter, but less interesting. Only one solitary cyclist passed me by all day. In need of company and conversation, he slowed down for a chat. "Oh well, best be on my way" he said when he eventually realised I wasn't. In spitting distance of my destination, I didn't want to linger.
Dunkeld was a picture postcard of a place, and as I entered through the forest, there ahead of me was the Cathedral, I was entranced. The bus, however, left from Birnam on the other side of the bridge.
Conveniently, the bus stop had placed itself at the end of the pub garden, and I conveniently had just enough time to enjoy a Spritzer as the sun went over the yard arm. And yes, I had already made sure I was on the right side of the road!