The Itinerary

The Itinerary

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

May 12 - Isle of Skye

Tuesday, May 12, Day 98 - Isle of Skye 

It rained and blew all night and is still at it when Dick finally gets up shortly after 8AM. That must be the signal because the rain comes to an end and the sky shows signs of clearing. Carolyn rolls out about 9AM and we have breakfast. Dick goes to the car to see if he can figure out how to reset the "Low Tyre Pressure" warning that popped on yesterday. The pressure is right so it must be a system fault and he finally figures it out using the Volvo’s electronic instruction manual. We will see if the warning light stays off.

By the time the car issue is addressed, the rain and cloud have moved back in. It is trying to improve but reality is changing by the minute. Carolyn starts a load of wash in a front loading, European style washer and it says it will take an hour and a half for one load of wash and not even that big! While waiting for that to complete so it can be hung on the "clothes horse" to dry as there is no dryer, we work on pictures and decide to drive the northern circuit or loop on the island. Map says it should be 50 miles.

By the time the wash is done, Carolyn has another picnic lunch made and we are off about 12:45PM. We stop at a little grocery on our way to see what they might carry as we do not have enough for the remaining three nights here. The answer is not much and she is looking for a can of green beans which they don’t have!

The road becomes, once again, one lane with "Passing Places" and with clouds lifting and some sun showing the scenery is spectacular. We see, from a distance, the ruins of Duntulm Castle and stop for our standard, in-car picnic.

While eating we see a small cruise ship heading for passage around the north end of the island. They are really close to land, but it is raining a bit so we can't read the name even with the lens. We stop at the Skye Museum of Island Life (admission 5 GBP for two) and see how primitive life for these crofters was even fifty or so years ago. Talk about a hard scrabble existence! The grave of Scottish heroine, Flora MacDonald, is just up the road from the museum so we check it out. She is famous for helping Bonnie Prince Charlie escape after the Rising in 1745.

Heading south on the west side of the island we can see the Outer Hebrides Islands of North Uist and South Harris in the distance. Dick lets an 18-wheeler (they actually have 22 wheels in Europe) pass and it runs interference for us on the rest of the one lane road. Everybody gives it plenty of room and Dick tucks in right behind him for most of the way to Uig from which the ferry to the Outer Hebrides sails.

We head on back into Portree and find a Bank of Scotland ATM and get some more cash as our current hostess wants to be paid in cash. Then we explore a local craft market where Carolyn makes a few small purchases and puts a couple of others on the maybe list. Then we head for the barn. Today we can actually see the Old Man Storr rock formation. Yesterday it was pouring rain as we drove by.

The light on the water as we approach home is showing some very nice blues and turquoise so we stop at an overlook for Mealt Waterfall and Kilt Rock but we are too late and the wind is howling to the point that the metal guard rail by the cliff is humming from the wind. We take a couple of photos, but It should be a better picture in the morning with the sun from the East and Dick says he will check it out tomorrow if the sun is out early. (Fat chance based on the last 24 hours!). Even with the rain showers and being somewhat overcast, we have had some great light that has really shown how beautiful this island is!

Back at the house by 4:30PM, it is nice to be settled early. We fix a cocktail and make a leisurely dinner. It is nice to have a whole house on one level to spread out in. The sun is in and out of the clouds with light showers and, at some point, we have a full rainbow. But, it is down to a half before Carolyn can get outside with the camera! The sky is finally dark around 10:00PM and it is bed time!

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