Friday, September 14, 2007

Train Day 1

After an hour's wait in the First Class lounge at Waverly (and our last contact with cyberspace for the foreseeable future), we followed a piper to our train, causing a minor sensation in the train station. What an unusual gaggle of tourists, and why is that piper leading them through the train station? Here you see the view crossing the Firth of Forth train bridge just outside Edinburgh, as we headed up the east coast of Scotland.

After tea on the train, the evening festivities included a ceilidh ("kay-lee") at Strathisla (-isla is pronounced "eye-la", as in island), home of one of the distilleries that produces Chivas Regal scotch whisky. We tasted several variants of the local whisky (12 yo, 18 yo, and single malt) and were introduced to a few Scottish dances (the Gay Gordon, Dashing White Sergeant, and Strip the Willow). I am happy to report that I was able to join in the dancing, as long as I didn't try to skip. We gave up on the Dashing White Sergeant quickly as a lost cause, but had quite a good time with Strip the Willow, which I am told is a common way to start a Scottish dancing evening, as everyone dances with everyone and it's a good way to scope out whom you might want to spend time with later in the evening.

The music was again provided by an accordion, this time accompanied by a snare drum. No fiddlers yet, but rumor has it I may finally hear one tonight.

1 comment:

Maricello said...

I am beginning to think that most Scottish fiddling is done in North America, Australia, and New Zealand, not in Scotland!

Sounds like you are having a great time. I am enjoying your reports.