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Sunday, May 9, 2010

1 comment:

Kristin said...

I took the year of 2000-2001 off from college and spent six weeks that spring backpacking around England, Ireland, and Scotland. After traveling around England and Ireland, I took a train up to Inverness. I remember listening to Rush on my portable CD player. It was late April and it was so cold, the first thing I had to do when I got off the train was buy a wool sweater! There were not many tourists that year because of the Hoof and Mouth scare, and I had the youth hostels in northern Scotland practically to myself. I took a ferry from Ullapool to Stornoway and stayed in a crofter's hut on the very west coast of Lewis where I painted this watercolor. There were only two other people there. One was a elderly German gentleman who said he used to spend his vacations kayaking around the British Isles. He said that now that he was older, he backpacked instead. The other was an American in his forties who smoked a lot of pot. The German guy and I didn't like him very much and he didn't stay very long. We thought that he ran out without paying his bill. The land was rough, but beautiful, and the light was the most amazing that I have ever seen. Sunrises and sunsets stretched out for hours because it was so far north. The cold Atlantic crashed against the rocky beach. It was weird seeing the Atlantic to the west. There were more sheep than people. The bus only came to the crofter's hut once a day, and not at all on Sunday, but I managed to see the Callanish Standing Stones in the rain. There were two other people there-- a British couple in a rented car. I also managed to get into Stornoway often enough to keep stocked up on Cadbury Creme Eggs. Annapolis is home, parts of Italy and the Carribbean are lovely, but Lewis is the most beautiful place that I've ever been to.