Published: July 10th 2017
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The rain came back! That's good because it means I can sleep longer and take a taxi instead of walking to the station. I booked an early (noon is early!) train to Inverness from Queens Station in Glasgow.

The cab driver, Douglas, has a daughter named Kirstin, who might need braces, lard hope she den't. He told me about some promising destinations to keep in mind this trip and said not to worry about the drive, to jest keep te the left.

Rolling farmlands, verdant countryside, lush wood. The occasional castle. The cutest little boy exclaimed to his father: "DA! DED YE SEE THE WEE LAMBS?!" and I just about wept right there. Wee is a real thing and it's every day and it breaks my heart with goodness.

Inverness is a stone town on a hill, topped with a modern (1846)castle that is still inhabited today. There has been a castle of one form or another there for 1400 years.

What's the smell? It's like old cheese or a barnyard plague or rotting liverwurst. It hit me in the face as soon as I left the train. The smell was so pungent I went online to find any mention of it. I found nothing! This beautiful tragic sewage town. I've since learned that the stench is mostly found around the train and bus station.

There are salons on every block, some for gentlemen only, so don't worry, guys. There is such a wealth of salons, in fact, that I'm beginning to feel something might be wrong with me if I don't partake in a makeover. Gaggles of middle aged women tourists gather together on corners and in pubs. There's at least one in each bunch with pink hair. Pink is in. I've seen more than a few pink-haired mums pushing prams as well.

My place is up a windy hill, past a church and in a neighborhood of conjoined trains of wee stone dwellings with wee stone yards and lil' iron gates. Mine's a house that lets out individual rooms with shared living room, kitchen and bathrooms. I'm in a single room with a single bed at the top of the house. I have my own glass sink and electric kettle. The decor reminds me of that museum in Edinburgh; it's as if someone just learned the meaning of decor and went to town decor-ating. You'll see.

After a nap and a phone charge, I explored the streets, searching for a restaurant called The White House, where I planned to ironically celebrate the 4th of July.

The White House didn't disappoint. I had an old fashioned and some mussels in cream sauce as I finished my book. I sat on a white couch in a lounge area surrounded by couples on romantic dates at tables around me.

After three hours and a tearfully finished book, it was back home.

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