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NC500 route in Scotland

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Funnily enough I had a similar experience many years ago. I used to go for an early morning thrash around the back lanes on a Sunday morning in my Caterham 7. On a lane at the back of Spittlegate airfield near Grantham stood a piper in full highland dress playing a lament. I called my wife on my mobile so she could hear it as well. Totally unbelievable. Could it have been the same person?:(

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Pipers often seek out secluded places to practice - thankfully!  There used to be one who stood by the roaddide at Bilbster forest approximately two miles from the nearest house.  He had to find another spot when they began to fell the woods for timber.

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I actually do have a set of bagpipes. I bought them from a music shop in Newark many years ago. The shopkeeper supplied me with a jar of a noxious substance to rub into the inside of the bag to keep it airtight and pliable. I think it was treacle! It was an impulse purchase and fortunately I never learned to play them!

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Was it Oscar Wilde who said " a gentleman is someone who knows how to play the bagpipes - but doesn't"

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I love the Bagpipes.  Maybe why I love the organ.  There are similarities.  We stayed near Loch Ness back in 1967.  Always remember taking a walk around the hills that evening.  We heard a lone piper somewhere but never did actually see him.  Had a powerful emotive effect in the silence of those hills.

 

I've often wanted to learn the 'pipes.  Never got around to it.  Probably too late now.  As I understand it a good set of pipes does not come cheap.

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Like Loppy I love the skirl of the pipes, one of my favourite tunes is The Flower of Scotland by the Royal Scots Dragoon Guards and Flowers of the Forest could bring a tear to anyone's eye.

 

It makes pipe music lovers cry and pipe..........................haters weep:crazy:

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Bagpipes? Er....no! Heard from a distance in Scotland, they do sound quite atmospheric. Any closer and they irritate me to the point of wanting to scream. I think it's the sound of the drone!

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You must admit though, Jill.  The drone is part of the pipes overall sound.  I was once in a room with some at a Scottish friend's wedding reception.  I learned the meaning of the word LOUD in a room like that. :Shock:

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^^^^^^^ Then you'd like to be piped into dinner in the mess, quite an occasion in the Guards depot mess. Then of course after dinner and the port and cheese is served the ladies retire for liquors whilst the piper plays a set or two.

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About 1973 my wife and I had a 2 week car-tour holiday in the Western Highlands. At our stopover in Fort William we had dinner in McTavish's Kitchen. After we started eating, a Piper started slowly walking up and down between the tables playing his pipes. It was an interesting experience, but to me not a quiet romantic setting.

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In the early 80's, my ex and I drove to Carlisle, and purchased Freedom of Scotland train tickets, valid for seven days. We boarded at Carlisle and did the west coast scenic routes such as Fort William, Mallaig, Oban, Kyle of Lochalsh. Then over to Inverness and down the east coast.

Didnt reach the far north, as I wanted to spend a day at least in Edinburgh.

We stayed in B&B's organised by the Scottish Tourist Board. At every destination, I just popped to their kiosk, and was informed of where we were due to stay. It worked very well.

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2 hours ago, Willow wilson said:

About 1973 my wife and I had a 2 week car-tour holiday in the Western Highlands. At our stopover in Fort William we had dinner in McTavish's Kitchen. After we started eating, a Piper started slowly walking up and down between the tables playing his pipes. It was an interesting experience, but to me not a quiet romantic setting.

Ah, McTavish’s Kitchen - the place that our young daughter, at the time, christened it “Shitty McDougals”smile2

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7 hours ago, Jill Sparrow said:

Don't like pan pipes either...nor mouth organs...piano accordions, etc.

 

You mean I can't play me harmonica?   I bought it years ago.  I can play Streets of Laredo quite badly.  :biggrin:. I think it can only play in the key of G so it's a bit limited in possibility's.  Pan pipes.  I don't have any but after all they are just a small rank of organ pipes and we like them.  Played well, I think they are quite pleasant.  :)

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NBL.    Just thinking.  Walking along the banks of the Trent down Stoke Bardolph around 9 pm while playing the pipes would definitely have gotten one an audience.  Might have got one thrown in the river too.  :biggrin:

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^^^^^^^^I do so agree with you Loppy, I like the pipes but that would be a step to far.:crazy::angry:

 

Fly did you frequent the famous chippy in Mallaig it's a cracker. We arrived at lunch time from Fort William and sat in the sunshine on the harbour wall scoffing to our hearts content.

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Not been to the chippy but I did go into the Tea Garden Cafe for an excellent pint of prawns in a tankard. I quite like Mallaig. We’ve caught the ferry over to Skye from there.

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Can't remember NBL, it's a long time ago. I don't think we stayed overnight as far as I can remember, but I loved the hustle and bustle of the place then. I'm a glutton for fishing villages / towns, and one on the East coast is on my wish list. Pittenweem.

Ill tell you a place I'll never revisit an that's Stonehaven. Jesus Christ, what a drab, dreary and depressing place.

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Fly, been to Pittenweem, lovely place. On the past golfing trips, I was in charge each day of driving the ladies round the UK, sightseeing. We pulled into Pittenweem [October] and it was covered in snow. Turned out they were filming the movie The Winter Guest with Emma Thompson, and it was fake snow. Crappy movie, but lovely little town. I do like Crail better though.

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Once did Crail, a day or so after a local music festival, and it was scruffy and a little disappointing, but a nice little town all the same. Must return one day. 

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The East Neuk of Fife was one of our favourite areas, from St Andrews round to Elie and Earlsferry, the town's and villages unique and the coastal path a delight.

Have to agree with you Fly re Stonehaven, although the cullen skink at The Ship Inn was delicious. Dunnottar Castle nearby is spectacular.

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one of my postings whilst in teh RAF was a temptorary detachment to Leuchars in Fife.  One night I was in the town of St Andrews and got chatting to a fairly well-oiled posh student of the University.  When it came around to the topic of the forces I told him that I was fed up and was thinking about leaving but couldn't afford the "Buy-out" fee of £250.  He promptly got out his cheque book and wrote me a cheque for £250! Needless to say, I didn't attempt to cash it - I would think he cancelled it as soon as he sobered up! 

:rotfl:

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If anyone is interested in the tourist route called the NC500 there is a short video and other information on the home website here:

http://www.northcoast500.com/

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Looks a good website compo. Have you become a member? I'm thinking of doing so - just the basic membership £15. Planning two trip a year so could be worth it.

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