Posted by: Turkadactyl | July 22, 2008

Run To The Hills

For those who are interested this is the synopsis of our vacation time in Scotland. My parents and Melissa Teal spent some time with us at the airport until our departure with fate. Captain Candy paid us a visit in Edmonton International. His super power is the ability to make various candy coated apples. Since I am allergic to raw apples I was unable to taste his super abilities but they sure did look good. Captain Candy’s secret identity is Phil. Please keep that a secret.

Air Canada

Air Canada was responsible for delivering us to the United Kingdom. Since we have been married us Turkadactyl’s have flown with Air Canada twice before and both times have received unfavourable reviews from the two of us.

The first trip Air Canada Mrs. Turkadactyl was red flagged and we were refused to go on the plane. Apparently the missus shared a name of someone who utilized fraud for a few Air Canada flights. the only way we could get on the flight was to pay for the tickets again. Thankfully the Mrs. T’s father applied pressure onto Air Canada when we arrived and money for two of the tickets was refunded. Trust me, it took a lot of arm twisting to receive a refund for two of the four tickets.

The second trip happened at Christmas. We were flying to the United Kingdom to spend time with my grandparents and celebrate their 60th wedding anniversary. We shared a section with an English man who had too much wine to drink on the plane and we had to babysit drunk Andy for 5 hours. the flight attendants did not make much of an effort to alleviate our situation. I asked to be paid for babysitting. they laughed thinking it was a joke. I was serious, for once.

Air Canada almost stuck out a third time. Our flight was delayed. the reason for the delay was Air Canada forgot to send a shuttle to pick up its’ flight crew at the hotel. We had to connect to a flight in Calgary and we were told in the air that we were going to miss our flight. Thankfully when the plane landed in Cowtown we had just enough time to make the transfer. Air Canada almost struck out. I was able to enjoy fantastic films such as 10,000 BC and jumper en route to United Kingdom. I was baffled as to why those two films were unable to put me to sleep.

Edinburgh

I was surprised with how cool the weather was when we arrived. I packed for summer and should have packed for fall. Thankfully I have some fall clothes arriving in the mail in three weeks. I had to buy a toque because my head was cold. I found a pleasent bright yellow toque to grace my head.

The missus and I walked around Edinburgh’s Old Town and followed that up with a walk up to the Salisbury Crags and Arthur’s Seat. Both hills provide a very good view of the city and surrounding areas. We concluded our time in Edinburgh with a trip to the local chippy and enjoyed some deep fried mushrooms. I felt sick after.

Fort William

Fort William is located in the western highlands of Scotland. Fort William is seen as the launching point of Ben Nevis, the largest peak in the United Kingdom. Mrs. Turkadactyl and I stayed in a small village south of Fort William, called Linlochleven. Our purpose here was to hike and summit Ben Nevis.

On our way up the 1,344 metre ascent (4,406 feet), I was telling the missus about the Ben Nevis race. Runners race up to the summit and back down. Well, lucky us we happened to be hiking on the day of the race. After that hike we had a lot of respect for those who entered that race. It is up the whole way and the base is pretty much at sea level.

This happened to be the second time I have hiked the Ben. the first time most of the mountain was in cloud cover so I did not enjoy the view at top. This time the missus and I enjoyed partial cloud breaks and were able to enjoy a partial view. A dream of mine is to be able to summit a mountain and break the cloud cover. I came close to that and enjoyed taking photos above some clouds. Unfortunately I did not take white balance into consideration so the photos look a wee bit dark.

In case you did not know much of Braveheart was filmed at Glen Nevis, the valley at the base of Ben Nevis. Watch Braveheart and we have been were the village scenes were filmed.

A ropes course was opened at the Kinlochleven Climbing Centre. We were able to try it for free since it was a promotion to draw people in. I am proud of Mrs. Turkadactyl as she is afraid of heights (go figure, being part Pteradactyl and all) and she was able to complete the course while 13 metres in the air. I also participated in a large swing. I was harnessed in and brought to a height of twelve metres and then released. Good times to be a Turkadactyl.

I felt safe in our hostel as it appears the hostel owner is friends with the animal kingdom. There were framed photos and posters, all over the hostel, of various animals. Our room was protected by the mighty lynx. I think I will have to look for a lynx shirt when I return.

The Isle of Skye

I have been to Skye before. I was looking forward to returning. I will admit, my first time on Skye I was spoiled as there was no rain. There was quite a bit of rain this time. I was really excited because we were going to be staying at the Skyewalker Hostel. When I visited their website the front page states, “The Force is strong with this one.” Our first night we were guarded by a Storm Trooper. Our second night was under the watchful eye of Luke Skywalker. C-3PO was the toilet attendent.

Unfortunately Luke was positioned outside our room and not inside. The second night were were in an eight bed room. One guest sharing the room was a large man in both height and belly. He snored very loud and it seemed that he never took a break from snoring. I remember one time rolling over and peering over the edge of the top bunk only to see his pasty white hairy belly staring right up at me as he is snoring away. I felt like Frodo Baggins when he puts on the One ring and the Eye of Sauron stars at him. That belly stills haunts me this day.

We enjoyed some Wii at Skyewalker. They designed a few Mii’s to Star Wars characters. Brilliant. I wished Drew and Melissa were there. I dominated as the Storm Trooper and I wished they were there to witness my triumphant victories.

Our hostel at Skye happened to be three miles away from Carbost. That name may only draw attention to one person- Talisker distellery. Wes, we poked our heads in and had a free sample. very good stuff right from the source. Did you know that it is cheaper to buy Scotch in Canada then in Scotland? No? Well it is. Apparently there are a lot of alchohol taxes here. Plus tourists want to buy Scotch in Scotland so I am sure that helps jack the price up.

Our hikes proved to be wet and windy. Thankfully when the rain subsided the wind was strong enough to dry our clothes in preparation for the next rain cloud. Drving on Skye also introduced Mrs. Turkadactyl to the one lane road. She taped some video on her camera so hopefully we can upload the footage. There is only one lane for both directions. Spread out periodically ar passing places. The road widens just a bit so one car pulls over and allows the other to continue. I thoroughly enjoyed driving on the one lane roads.

Aviemore

The last part of our holiday time brought us to Aviemore, located a wee bit south of Loch Ness and Inverness. Now I begin this section with sad news. Earlier on I reported a hopeful sighting of a Loch Ness monster shirt. My journey ended up being unfruitful. I arrived at Camas with no Nessie shirt. there was only one that I could find and it was very cheap looking. Out of respect for my other animal t-shirts I could not allow a cheap looking Nessie shirt to join their ranks. Tyson, I know this is tough news to take but i think you would understand if you saw it. There was potential (Nessie had sharp teeth and there was lightning), but in the end it was a cheaply made design to try and fool tourists.

Aviemore was our launching point for the Cairngorms. Our goals was to summit the second and sixth largest peaks in the United Kingdom- Ben Macdui (1,309 metres) and Cairn Gorm (1,244 metres). We met with success. Rain clouds also surrounded us very fast and we lost the trail. Thankfully Turkadactyl’s have a great sense of direction and we made our way safely back to the parking lot via a new trail.

We enjoyed some haggis and a deep fried mars bar for dinner and then headed back to Edinburgh. Now haggis grosses many people because it is stored in a sheeps bladder. I found out that haggis cannot be imported into the United States because it is illegal to consume sheeps lungs. Haggis is somposed of sheep heart, lung, and liver and mixed with oats, spices, and onions. The part I find most disturbing are the onions.

Oban

Mrs. Turkadactyl and I have returned to car and boarded the bus to Oban. It is the next day that we leave for Camas. Another treat for Wes, I popped my head into the distellery. Apparently there is a distellery on Mull so I may visit on a day off. We are on the south side of Mull. The distillery is on the north.

Oban is a quaint little town with a few fishing boats. A seal colony lives not too far from Oban. My sleep that night was very painful. The hostel had separate male and female dorms. I shared my room with seven other men. I think five of them snored. The most disturbing part is something that I ask prayer for. Please leave a comment if you will be committed to praying for this.

The Visitor

When I returned to my room after going out for dinner I noticed that my duvet had been messed a bit and my pj’s flung to the floor. I wondered if I had taken someone else’s bunk, even though when I arrived no one had placed sheets on the bed thus claiming the bunk. Part of me wondered, as I was going to bed, if I would be woken up during the night by someone wanting the bed.

Durinf the night I believe I was awoken. It could very well have been a dream but it certainly seemed as though I was awake. I thought I heard someone walking up to my bed. My back was facing the “visitor” at the time. I could sense the “visitor” leaning over and trying to look at my face. I pretended to be asleep. But this was happening for what seemed a while so I wanted to open my eyes to voice my displeasure at their poor manners. No matter how hard I tried I could not open my eyes. I then senses the “visitor” walk away and it is then that I turned around and opened my eyes. I saw no one. I prayed after that.

I ask for prayer as the presence seemed very malevolent. It seemed to try to identify me. I did not feel safe. The presence seemed very physical. There was definitely something spirutal about it. Please pray for protection for us as well as insight into what I just shared.

Camas

We have arrived at Camas now. The whole crew has a day off today so I have been able to type away at the computer uninterrupted. I will write as I get a chance. PLease stay in touch with us. It may be tough for us to write personally. Since we are a two mile walk from the road it is very easy to feel isolated. It will be encouraging to hear from friends and family. We are also a phone call away and it would be a wonderful treat to get a phone call. Photos are now uploaded so I hope to get some of them up sometime soon.


Responses

  1. Hey Alex and Michelle,

    We will be keeping you in our thoughts and prayers especially about the “visitor”.

    We’re leaving in a few minutes on vacation – going camping for 3 weeks. We may not have any computer access while we are gone, but if the opportunity arises, we will be sure to check your blog while we are gone.

    You guys are awesome 🙂 and we are jealous…stop sending pictures and telling us about wonderful smelly poop!

    By the way, the Poopsmith lives in his royal biffy, also known as the outhouse, where he spends much time on his throne. It is also poetic justice after I have been subject to your smell over the past several months, that you should now be known as the Poopsmith.

    Smell ya later!

    John & Kim & boys

    P.S. Justin & Jeremy say “Bow to your sensai!!!”

    Like


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