John & Anne Wiley

2018/12/20

Sweet Aberdeen

For myriad reasons, two weeks have escaped since last I shared from our remarkable UK/EU Adventure. Similarly, many reasons that now escape me prevented any good pix of our lovely train journey from Inverness to Aberdeen. There was a song known to the guitar of my youth about Abilene (TX) that we’ve actually flown past, absolutely unrelated to this post aside from the tune now playing in my head. The city we visited in Scotland though, is indeed a pretty “town.”

6923 Hotel View 1

6923 Hotel View 1

We enjoyed the walk to our hotel despite dragging our light luggage, and the room views even more.

6925 Hotel View 2

6925 Hotel View 2

It was among the better room views of our remarkable trip, but even so…

6929 Hotel View 3

6929 Hotel View 3

…after quickly stashing luggage we headed out to explore and to look for a tour of the area. Carrying a camera and a few light items in a backpack, we contemplatively strolled an ancient church cemetery.

162420 Ancestral Memories

162420 Ancestral Memories

The search for tours wasn’t going well, though we were greatly enjoying the random wandering between old and new aspects of this rugged yet welcoming city.

6959 Old & New Comingle

6959 Old & New Comingle

It’s a major seaport, with quite a different feel than Inverness as large ships rock slowly amid rushing city traffic.

6964 Fast & Slow Contrast

6964 Fast & Slow Contrast

We didn’t find a tour. Surprising to us for an attractive city this size. There were a few tours to specific sites, mostly out of town, but no bus to take us around the city itself. So in a lucky stroke of inspiration, I hailed a cab. Lucky for us, it was driven by a native who turned out to own that small cab company. For about what an Edinburgh bus tour would cost, he started us out with highlights of the city and then nipped out to King’s College.

6980 King's College Chapel

6980 King’s College Chapel

To us, the chapel there qualifies as a small cathedral with an impressive steeple. Hopping out to walk into the courtyard, I of course snapped some decorative lintels like this one.

7006 Ages Of Learning

7006 Ages Of Learning

This place goes back a bit! Walking back out to the cab, I paused for this look at the neighboring towers and wondered whether they’d ever repelled an attack.

7019 Two Towers

7019 Two Towers

If it had once been a bastion of armed men, now there were families and I presumed women have now assumed prominent positions in the faculty and student body (about 54% of students now).

7020 Girl Scales the Wall

7020 Girl Scales the Wall

Among the many highlights of this custom tour was a stop at the ancient Church of St. Machar. The two main entrances curve among tombstones and memorials, invoking a reverence even before entering the cathedral.

7026 St. Machar Cathedral

7026 St. Machar Cathedral

We declined our guide’s offer to show off the city’s perhaps currently most famous golf course, but he enjoyed pointing out that the course was nearly not built. The developer threatened not to build it unless a planned offshore wind turbine was canceled. Despite that, the count was upped to a dozen or so and the golf magnate relented to the great amusement of locals.

7052 Local Storm

7052 Local Storm

Near where that zoom pic was shot, we drove past a beach arcade enjoyed by locals and visitors alike.

7068 Beach Promenade

7068 Beach Promenade

Our tour ended after a stop to check out perhaps the driver’s favorite restaurant, in a lighthouse themed building a little further along the beach at left. We strolled the downtown core a little more, taking in another breath of the fresh Scottish breeze wafting among the new and ancient facets of this rugged and friendly place.

7097 Aberdeen Air

7097 Aberdeen Air

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