The time had come to leave Edinburgh and Scotland. The Kildonan Lodge Hotel had been our home for a total of seven nights on our two stays in Edinburgh providing a wonderful base for our brief visits exploring that City and sights in the nearby countryside.
Edinburgh also provided some culinary highlights among the best being a number of pub soups-of-the-day, a steak with wonderful peppercorn sauce at Kildonan and probably the best minestrone I have ever enjoyed at the Isola Italian restaurant.
Putting on my engineering hat, it is hard not to be impressed by the challenges of building the majestic castles at Edinburgh and Stirling, structures that will last as long as humans. But Scottish engineering always seems to throw up examples of how its people meet the challenges of their land. Modern engineering wonders would have to include the Falkirk wheel that joins two canals by lifting and
lowering boats though an elevation difference of some 35 metres, and of course the bridges over the Firth of Forth. The new road bridge is under construction and well advanced and as equally impressive as its predecessor.
Leaving Edinburgh on a beautiful clear sunny day, we took the A702 and this proved to be a most enjoyable drive. The two lane road snaked its way between the green rolling hills dotted with sheep and their new lambs in cleared fields up to the golden gorse and the heather (that is not yet in bloom). Fields are divided by dry stone walls that criss-cross and run up the steepest hills and look as though they should topple over, but these are built by experts, and to last.
The road tends to follow the valley streams and passes through numerous villages where it was almost possible to reach out and touch the old stone house.
The British love to drive and these windy roads are made for driving rather than just steering the car. Manual transmissions are most common and add to the driving experience when encountering the recurring bends and changes in speed limits through villages. I must have some British me…