Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Loch Ness, A Cow, and A Wee Haggis

Madainn mhath! 

That would be "Good Morning!" in Gaelic. Hope you all had a restful weekend of honoring our service men and women. My weekend was a big jet-laggy since on Sunday I flew in from glorious Scotland (hence the Gaelic) after spending 9 days in the Motherland.

Myself and 2 other teachers from our school took 14 of our seniors--who graduate in just a few more days (sniff!)--over to the Highlands on a service trip. We painted a community center, gave an assembly at a primary school, mulched (barked, as the Scots call it) a community park, painted several playgrounds, led worship in a local church, sorted donations at a local charity center. So much work to be done, but managed to leave time to visit Urquhart Castle, Inverness, Ross County football stadium (football = soccer), Fyrish monument, Celtic Park football stadium, a bagpipe performance, the town heritage center, and--of course--consume as much of the local delicacies as humanly possible. 

One such delicacy: haggis

The Wee Haggis
The kids were a bit unsure of this odd-looking dish, but by the end of the meal--what the locals call a Burns Supper (which normally occurs January 25 rather than in May)--there was nary a scrap of haggis left. A massive hit!

So I wanted to share just a few pictures of our whirlwind journey. 

This is my favorite view en-route to my sweet mum-in-law's house.
You round the bend and there before you spreads the Cromarty Firth.
And it's gorgeous and it sings "Almost Home!"
Me with Reay: best mum-in-law EVER.
Pipe Band in Invergordon
Heilan' Coo
(pronounced hee'-lan coo, aka Highland Cow).
These guys make me laugh every time I see them.
Favorite City: Inverness
A cobbled street of shops in Inverness.
(This pic was taken by one of my brilliant students.)
Celtic Park Stadium
Preparing for another delectable meal
Misty Loch Ness
A perfect Highland sky

Have a beautiful Wednesday, all!


  1. Sigh, it all looks so lovely, and seems like a beautiful and delightful haggis-filled time all around! I'm officially envious. P.S. DId you know there is a miniature breed of the highland cow (sorry, heilan coo!) (Gina has been dreaming of the day our backyard becomes a mini "heilan" where our mini coos would roam. . . )

    1. Well, we may have to do a little writer's retreat in the Highlands for ENG792, yes? And I had no idea there was a miniature breed of heilan coo - if the large one's make me laugh, I'm sure the wee ones would bring on a full-fledged guffaw. These cows look like they're grumpy and laughing all at the same time. Love it. And I'm sure they'd be more than willing to share their hairy-ness with Gina if they knew that she was going to make a DNA sweatervest out of it. Thanks, Liza - can't wait for PRAGUE! xo

  2. It looks like an amazing place! And going home is always nice.

    1. Indeed, there's no place like home :) Thanks, Debbi!

  3. Gorgeous! This makes me stir-crazy. I need to go!!!

    1. You do need to go, Lauren! Get a lung-ful of that Highland air. Always works to quell my stir-craziness. Thanks, Lauren!

  4. Love, love the pictures, Anna. So beautiful. And damp looking. I would SO have loved to see the pipe band and sat down to tea! And the Highland coos--I've always thought the breed looked grumpy, too, but they're probably quite nice. ;) Thank you for sharing your trip.

    1. Yes, you would love the coos and the tea and the pipes - and the rain :) I'll email my mum in law and ask her to send some of their rain over-abundance your way. Thanks, Danni!


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