Wednesday, October 18, 2006

You take the High-road and i'll take the cliche...

Greetings all,

It has been a long time since I have written anything travel related from the Wonderful World of Wah.

We have been in Scotland for about 2 weeks. It must be obvious from my total lack of blogging basically nothing has happened since I have been here... nothing at all.. nada, bupkiss, zero, zilch, squat, diddly, a big duck egg...

Well... nothing except my sister's wedding...

Yep.. the girl known to me as Deborah Jane Rowbotham for 32 years is now Deborah Jane Walker nee Rowbotham. Married off to a lovely scottish man named Eoghann (pronounced Ewan for the Hard-Of-Gaelic).
Eoghann (and his family) is great. Funny, generous, kind hearted and able to put up with the entire Rowbotham Tribe (sans Jack, Adam and their two sprog) camping bedouin-style on his living room floor (and abusing the living jebus out of his oh-so-fast broadband connection.. mmm City of Heroes.. yummy). This means that from now on if you mess with me you mess with the entire Walker clan... and they are scottish! a-ha! ...

But I am jumping ahead of my self... the weekend before Deb and Eog were married I was invited to Eoghann's Stag Weekend. We all piled into a 14 person bus and hit the Scottish Island of Islay (pronounced I-la.. the Isle of Islay... they drink a lot of whiskey here). I knew this was going to be a long weekend when it was explained to me that the weekend would consist of traveling to 7 Scottish Whiskey Distilleries and partaking of as much 'Water of Life'.

Oooo boy.. what a weekend.. Let me tell you what happened..

It all started when Eog****************************************************. (These stories have beed erased in accordance with the rules of 'What Happened On The Stag Weekend Stays On The Stag Weekend')

Hmm seems that contract i signed in blood before the stag weekend really works! Aaaaanyhoo we all had a ball of a time (My father also came along and I am allowed to say plays a mean game of poker.. and takes no pity on drunken people). Scottish and Irish people are great to have a stag weekend with. I advise everyone that is thinking about having a stag party/weekend to hire Rent-A-Gaelic.

Oooh.. if you are interested in Whiskey Production than have a look at the Bruichladdich Distillery website.. they even have live webcams! Keep an eye out for the whiskey they call WMD (Whiskey of Mass Destruction) and WMD2 - Yellow Submarine. The names of these two whiskeys have an interesting origin.. i cant say much now due to time constrainst but it has connection with an american spy agency and the fact that whiskey stills look alot like chemical warfare vats.. supposedly.

Girlclumsy and I have also visited the Falkirk Wheel. This is an amazing bit of engineering. Everybody knows how impressed I am about 2000-5000 year old drains and suchlike.. well I have found a piece of modern engineering that has a sense of whimsical grandeur. It looks like something out of Alan Moore's League of ExtraOrdinary Gentleman. The Wheel is a device that lifts canal boats (and lowers them as well) 35 metres between two different height canals... and if that doesnt get your heart pumping then you just cant hang with the Wah-Dawg :)

So, as i said before my sister was married on the weekend. She looked very beautiful in her dress. My mother had a fantastic hand made hat. It was created in Australia and carried half way round the world to be the Hat of Honour at the wedding :)It was a fantastic, fun ceremony held at Eoghann's parent's house. Called The Croft it is situated near the town 'Muir of Ord' in the scottish highlands. It was a non-religious ceremony (huzzah!) where the good times rolled well into the night. I even wore a kilt! oooh yes sports-fans.. the Wah was covered in kilty goodness! I was in a dress, carrying a knife in my sock (it is called a Sgian Dubh prounced 'Ski-An Do'.. well close enough) and ready to party! And party we did! I love a national dress that requires you to wear a knife. Nobody was stabbed that night but i think that was mainly to do with everybody being exhausted from the traditional scottish dancing and the free flowing alchomohol. Big Props (I am such a white geek) to Geoff and Helen. They are Eoghann's parents and did an amazing job with the food preperation and house set-up. I was especially impressed with the Australian Bar they created in their garage to make us feel at home. I have never seen so many cork-hats and plastic crocodiles in one place! I met the Irish author Evelyn Conlon. She and her talented husband Finton (he plays the flute professionally) were guests at the wedding. She even gave me a signed copy of her last book (here i come EBay!.. no no.. i jest). Her next book is about Irish people coming to Australia during the Irish Potato Famine. I hope that when i return to Australia next year I can organise for her to do some readings from her new book at the Brisbane City Council Libraries!

All in all a very successful wedding and reception. It was a shame my elder sister Jacky, her husband Adam and their two children, Quinn and Perri, couldn't attend but they were remembered and missed during the ceremony (There are many many pictures and videos for them as well)

Tomorrow we are off to Paris for a few days. We shall be meeting up with Girlclumsy's parents and my parents as well.. seeing that my parents only left at midday today i am not missing them that much :)

After Paris we come back to Scotland and cruise around Loch Ness for a while.. then.. well then we have a week or so to do something before we head off to Morocco.

I'll try and keep in touch more often than once every two weeks :)

P.s Best of Luck to 'Nightwatch' at the Brisbane Arts Theatre. It opens... soon. If you like Terry Pratchett novels and you live in Brisbane Australia then make the time to support a local theatre company!


Anonymous said...

hi got all the photos everybody looked wonderful. love the hat of honour mum wore. glad all went well. off to the opera sat. might learn some italian. loved the knees. wah. chow. silvy

Anonymous said...

hmmm possibly a poker party to christen the new abode, when you and "she" get back?

the fiend
not one track.... really!

Graham said...

Great to meet you all at what was a memorable wedding even by Highland standards - and the weather was just perfect.... compared to the last few days which has seen lots of flooding and landslips - still I suppose we need more water to replenish the whisky (not whiskey - the spelling used by our Irish friends for their not inferior national tipple). Hope to see you all back soon. Slainte. Some photos at