Wednesday, August 24, 2005

It's just a little rain!

Wednesday morning on Mull we woke up to a wee downpour. So we decided to start indoors, at Duart Castle. This is the home of the clan MacLean and looks to be a real, thick-walled, battlement-topped castle. But, though the outer walls are indeed old, it was pretty ruined until the interior was completely restored in 1911. Imagine rebuilding a castle!

It was quite fun for kids and adults alike. There was a big 4-poster bed and old dresses for Elaine and arrow slits, cannonballs lodged in the old walls and spiral staircases for Arthur. There was also an excellent tearoom where we had a piece of homemade cake before heading out into the rain again.

Down in the southern part of the island there are more standing stones. And these are arranged in a circle! So, must see. You get to the circle by tramping across a farmer's field, following a path marked by stones painted white. Luckily when one gets close, one can distinguish these from wet sheep. After the first 3 or 4 ankle-deep puddles, we hardly noticed that we were soaked to the skin. Luckily the kids had spotted welly boots in a shop before we had left Cambridge, so they were a bit more protected than we were. As you can see, a great time was had by all. We slogged back through the field, drove through the rain to our digs and dried out.
We learned that other people from the lodge had spent the day searching for sea eagles, and after walking through the rain for 8 hours, did indeed see some. For the birders in the crowd, I will tell you that we saw cormorants and some other birds that look quite like cormorants, and some gull-ish birds and stuff like that. I'm a bit better at identifying rhododendrons and fuschias than birds!

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