Hikes and Hangovers: 10 Days in Scotland (Part 2)

inverness

It's said that photos can speak a thousand words but in our case, they actually ask a thousand questions. Like, 'who is this elderly, bearded, toothless man in all of our Inverness photos?' and 'why is Heather giving the toothless man a kiss on the cheek (lips)?' and most importantly 'why did Haley decide to wear pants that look like the labia majora to a distillery tour?'.  These questions and many more are sure to not be answered as we continue on this journey together with Part 2 of our Scotland trip.

Taking off from where we ended Part 1, we said our goodbyes to the Isle of Skye with high hopes for the rest of the trip. Based on what we had just seen and experienced, we could only assume the rest of our adventure together would be equally as magical. Moving from the west coast into the north eastern highlands, we eventually made our way to Inverness. Best known for being located at the tail end of Loch Ness, Inverness was a place we had hoped to get a bit more acquainted with during our day and a half stay.

Unfortunately, the only memory we have left of this picturesque city (besides our incredible hotel room and these handful of photos) is the one where we forgot to eat a proper meal all day long and decided it was a good idea to try all the recommended gin at a local pub.

Not actually us, but maybe us?

Not actually us, but maybe us?

The rest of the night and early hours of the morning we could only piece together by trading phones and storyboarding our photos together to begin our journey of questions.

We got out of Inverness as quickly as possible so as to not have any more horrifying memories triggered by the local scenery and/or people in front of whom we most certainly embarrassed ourselves. We made our way (slowly and dangerously, while Heather slept in the passenger seat leaving Haley to navigate roughly 300 quadruple-laned roundabouts) to our next destination: Distillery heaven. Well, what should have been heaven, but turned out to be post-gin body tremors and trying not to die. 

Actual footage of us whisky-tasting on our distillery tour. 

Actual footage of us whisky-tasting on our distillery tour. 

Thanks to a lovely visit with Chris Brousseau, whisky archivist for the Strathisla Distillery, and long-time friend of our Dad, we managed to revive ourselves from hangover death and enjoy a fantastic behind-the-scenes tour of the beautiful distillery. See below for the stunning building & whisky selection, Heather's post-vomit bird-nest hair and Haley's camel-toe inducing pants that have since been burned.

Despite wanting to take a 12 hour nap in the distillery's archive room, we carried on our merry, see-through pale, and 5 collective pounds lighter between us, way to Aberdeen.

After our hurricane-like time in Inverness we decided to keep things quite low key in Aberdeen so to give our fragile bodies a rest. And thanks to a last minute, hands down best airbnb of all time (honestly, the most beautiful suite AND hosts WE LOVE YOU CRAIG & PAM), great vegan food and paracetamol, we were starting to feel human again. Needless to say, during our downtime we managed to get caught up on all of the UK's finest reality TV shows regarding penises, embarrassing bodies and shitty landlords (see in Pt. 1 for clarification). 

Our next stop on the trip was the Capital of Scotland, also known as the city that no North American can pronounce correctly: Edinburgh (ed-in-brah).  After a full day and a half of being conscious and vowing to never drink again, we arrived into the city early evening and decided to stroll around the old cobblestone streets and see what the local nightlife was like. If you're thinking, 'whoa ladies, this is a slippery slope' and 'haven't you had enough to drink for the remainder of your 30s?' then you would definitely be correct, but alas there was no stopping us. 

Maybe flashbacks of Inverness were to thank, but this time around we did manage to call it a night 'early' enough so that we could muster up the energy to actually enjoy some time in the capital the following day. 

In short, we managed to tour Edinburgh castle, find William Wallace, listen to bagpipers and check out the underground city via Mary King's Close [word to the wise: not for the faint (aka hungover) of heart - we had to do the deep breath countdown and hold onto the walls at least twice each during this short tour full of seniors]. 

Maybe the most important photo of the trip

Maybe the most important photo of the trip

After Edinburgh, we only had a few days left before the flight home so we decided to split our time between Glasgow and Ayr, with a short pit stop to Stirling first.

Ayr is a quaint town on the west coast of Scotland where Heather spent her last year of University many moons ago. We managed to hit up all the old  stomping grounds from her hay day, and also spend some time hanging out with some seagull pals down on Ayr beach. 

To say we were lucky with weather for the majority of our Scotland trip would be a serious understatement. For some reason (pagan spells) the sun followed us on the entirety of our trip until our last two days in Glasgow. But nevertheless we managed to get in a few nights of drinks (please, help us) and dinners with some of Heather's old Uni pals, stroll down Sauchiehall street, revisit one of the best record shop/vegan restaurant mashups in the world and close Heather's 2007 Bank of Scotland account (yes, she cried). If you ever get the chance to visit Scotland, do not skip out on this city. It is as colourful as it is quesitonable, but it undoubtedly houses some of the kindest and funniest humans imagineable.

And with that, we wrap up the tall tales of our sister trip to one of the most magical places on earth. We hope you've enjoyed reading the journey as much as we enjoyed reveling our way through it. With so much to see and an opportunity to see it with each other, we can easily count this as a major one for the books. It's not often in our adult years that we get to spend such intentional time with a sibling, but we like to think that this is only the beginning of our new adventures together (but next time, less gin. Maybe).

Godspeed, folded crotch pants.

h&h