March 10, 2007 - Scotland, day 2
Up to the Highlands

Before we left Dalhousie Castle for the Highlands, we visited the castle's falconrie.

We particuclarly liked this Great Gray Owl. He chriped and yapped at Jill - and kept turning his head around and preening his back feathers.

Close-up of one of the one of the larger falcons.

We stopped at a store for drinks and saw these.
No idea.

Southwest of Edinburgh is the small town of Roslin, home of Rosslyn Chapel.
Sound familiar? It is named after the Rose Line and is prominent in the DaVinci code.

Every inch of Rosslyn is covered with carvings of ALL types.

There are pagan carvings, Christian carvings, Egyptian, Grecian, Jewish, etc.

This is the Master's pillar. Nothing is symmetrical in this place. He left to study abroad to decide on a design for a second pillar, right...

While he was gone, his apprentice got divine inspiration and carved up this masterpiece.
When the master saw it, he killed the apprentice in a fit of jealousy.

One of several distinct Templar carvings.

This is the side door. Notice the stone 'beams' on the right and left are totally different. Same for the columns. Nothing is symmetrical, but everything is carved. Amazing.

Stunning view of lower Scotland countryside.

Flying buttresses! And a square in the circular stained glass window. It's distinctly gothic, but distinctly not at the same time.

The main door, but only one. Again, gothic, but not.

Heading out over the Firth of Forth (the body of water - like a bay for the city of Edinburgh).

We saw an entire rainbow over this chateau. Amazingly, it appeared too close to get it in a picture.

(The rest of the rainbow.)

Inverness castle.

Loch Ness.
It was so windy there were waves on the loch.

What a photogenic body of water.

Urquhurt Castle, on the western bank of Loch Ness.

It was destroyed by its occupants in the 1600s so it wasn't captured and used as a fortress.

Finally at our B&B at Invermoriston. Cool view of Loch Ness.

The chapel at Fort Augustus.

All of the cities have locks to take the boats out of the loch for storage/repair...

Looking down the locks.

Looks like Hansel and Gretel's forest...

Dinner. I had the most tender lamb shanks ever, but Jill's pie of Highland cattle (a special breed with dreadlocks) was best.
The finish: Cranachan - oats soaked in Scotch whisky and mixed with a raspberry and whisky-whipped cream.

Since Invermoriston has no nightlife (and only one restaurant), we went back to the room to sip some sherry and watch the end of the DaVinci Code to see Rosslyn Chapel.