Tuesday, February 3, 2009
Packed Like Sardines
- and... down to a beach.
(Borrowed picture, aye I knowwww. Very frustrating indeed).
The filing of people to desolate beaches happens only to the weary and unsuspecting traveler in search of some balance.
Except, the traveler can be smart and turn it into something else called "Revenge". Wisely and quietly the wise traveller can throttle the very idea of being jam-packed like a pickled onion, and go for an extended and peaceful stroll afterwards.
Allow me to make sense and begin to tell of something between the dusty pages and fragments of my derelict memory…
Once upon a few moons ago and hovering on the brink of a white Christmas, I took a somewhat stupid decision. I re-booked a trip with a tour company I have used before. Turned out that they have received too many bookings to cope with that particular year and the previously gorgeous tour guide had since become a sexy worshipped god who had no power against the advances of dozens of fluffy and very wet-eared spring-chickens. A sullen twenty eight year old with high expectations, I was caught amidst the grave disappointment of an outrageously “naff” affair.
A good solid word of advice: If you ever happen to find out too late that you’re bound to share an ancient castle with a bunch of strangers, take my advice: Find the key to the dungeon and lure the huge amount of girls under the age of 25 in there. Lock them up, without a conscience, those binging and for some reason forever screaming, tit-bearing foreign from all over dimwits...
I was astonished to the point of rage when I was cajoled with dozens other bright-faced fellow tourists into one of three big busses. To be transported to a place north of the Highlands of Scotland - Carbisdale Castle in the Sutherland region. The entrance to the castle was quite impressive and the towers showed some promise before we came to halt and were dumped like potato bags in front of a huge old wooden door.
During the first 24 hours, I discovered horror of horrors. My fairy-tale Christmas holiday had turned into doomed glory. Seemed like I was to be part of some sort of ghastly surprise. The stunning location had an adder hidden behind every other door and heavily draped curtain; and one did not need to wait for night for it to strike. It was a place where the mamba danced to the beat of a bagpipe, thrill of drunken flying skirts and kilts and ensconced in lethargic stupor.
The more adventurous could even sweep down a chimney or up to the towers. I did not want to do that. Neither did I have the desire to imagine the amount of amorous activities happening on the very high window ledges. This place, built between 1905 - 1917, made me feel like a stiff-necked frigid ice-queen who only happened to wonder how the peasants had come to nest in her bosom.
How their names could have ended up written in some vile signage on her guest-list?!
This however, isn’t about the sordid details of shameless tarts and farts, but about discovering secret gardens and winding snowy roads below the swirling roots of deep forests.
Ah well, I have been summoned again by the mafia to do some… Please try not to shred your nails to pieces in anticipation of a gruesome end to this particular story. It won’t be worth it, I promise…
Carbisdale Castle was built by the Duchess of Sutherland and is now used as a youth hostel, operated by the Scottish Youth Hostels Association. It is located on a hill above the Kyle of Sutherland. The castle boasts with marble statues or magnificent paintings in the galleries, the old library and dining room.