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Published: January 24th 2008
A paper plant is the next destination. Keith has a meeting in Scotland, I'm tagging along. He's going to get a reputation of the husband whose wife won't let him out of her sight, it'll make them wonder what he's been up to!
So, another taxi drive from the airport in Aberdeen to Inverurie, with a driver who tells of the area. About how there's not much in the way of fishing now, more support for the oil industry. He gives me the bus route to get into Aberdeen, as there's not much where we are headed, but I don't really understand him, talks fast and the accent is a little hard to pick up right off the plane from London! But fascinating to listen to, since I know it is English! It's night so we don't see the country side driving in. The next day I'm pleasantly surprised to see how small the town is, how easy it is to get around and everyone is so nice!
At one of the meals I'm introduced to his colleague, Kenny, who shares an interest in geneology and grave yards! And to my great fortune he offers to show me
around the towns cemeteries and Stone Circles. Inverurie's history is Pictish, early Celtic. The stone circles are mysterious in their exact origin, but being at one, East Aquorthies, and seeing the relationship to the mountain beyond, it does seem to make sense that the engineers had celestial motivation. These sites are thousands of years old and could have been constructed to view the night sky.
We walked in the 'dubs', the 'muddy' road up to the circle. Kenny throws in a few doric words now and then! Doric, I think is the local dialect, full of beautiful sounds. A little elderly lady stopped me on the town square and started talking away, I hesitated and then said 'sorry I don't understand' and kept walking, but as I walked away from her, I did understand her to say 'deary me, deary me'! I hope I didn't offend her!
In the town center is a monument dedicated to WWI. Here I see the name McIntosh, listed several times. My great grandfather's last name. A couple of short telephone calls back to the states, but we can't seem to find our written information on his ancestors origins. Still have to
Brandsbutt Stone marker
the stone is in the left background
get up with one aunt, who will know. Not that you are interested in my family history, but here's a tip - do research before you arrive at your destination. Who knows, I might have passed distant cousins in the streets of Inverurie, and knowing that would have made our visit here even more meaningful. I stopped off at the tourist information office in town, they had just expanded, and proudly showed me "the new computer that would soon have the technology to trace my family roots". Kind of like you 'should have been here yesterday'!
Kenny grew up here, and our drive between the sites to graveyards was great! The air was so cold! But even in the cold winter, with a little sleet falling, I could see the beauty that the country side is famous for. The hills dotted with sheep, the stone fences that outlined the different shades of green pasture and farm land.
These pictures still cannot convey the actual colors.
At the antique store, the owner was just gushing over the true colors of summer in Inverurie. It was a treat to talk with her as we both share the thrill
of the hunt. Her little black Scottie dog named Emily barked and barked at me when I entered the shop! Should have thought to take a picture, the shop and the dog were so cute. Another missed photo was a street sign, instead of the silhouette of school children crossing the road, this is of a person with a walking cane!
Our hotel is the most spacious we've stayed in, with a neighborhood restuarant and bar. One night I joined Keith and the other guys at the bar, a colleague, Stephen was so intertaining and the nicest guy. All the men we met are great hosts. Stephen tudored us on drinking Scottish Whiskey. We now have another drink to appreciate! Polish vodka in Krakow, Italian wine in Bellusco, and now malt whiskey in Inverurie. There are many ways to tour Europe!
I bet you have read this far in hopes of an exciting Elvis account, but I don't have much. Kenny knows that we lived in Memphis before moving over, and he brings up the fact that Presley is a familar name in the area. He says some people are trying to trace Elvis back to Scottish roots.
of the Brandsbutt Stone
That doesn't quite hold up my theory that Elvis is everywhere, just that everywhere people are trying to cash in on Elvis.
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