Report 15
NESSIE UNDERCOVER Week 12+13 : From May 17 to May 30

"I’m really looking forward to going to Scotland", I think when after an one and a half hour crossing I set foot ashore in Carnryan at the Scottish West Coast. I follow the coastline leading up north. A herd of long-coated cattle is staring at me with prying eyes. Along with the typically Blackface sheep the will be my conversation partners for today.
A small ferry takes me to Dunoon where I enjoy a day of rest, which unfortunately turns out to be the wettest day of the week. But the friendliness of the Scottish people makes up for it. Nobody objects when I put up my tent in the lvillage green. « No problem. Make yourself at home! »

From Dunoon I cycle to Glencoe, the heart of the Highlands. I stay there for four days and make trips to Fort William and Ben Nevis, the highest top of Great Britain. For once no challenge by bike as the treacherous paths are covered with pebbles. I take out my mountaineering boots and moments later I’m enjoying surprising panoramas, splashing waterfalls and colourful rainbows. I put my glasses on and peer at the 37km long almost black lake: no sign of Nessie splashing in world-famous Loch Ness and surprisingly enough neither any sign of the well-known Scotsman wearing a kilt! I presume they only come out on sunnier days than these last few days. The spell of poor weather turns into a complete week. I practically swim by bike to Edinburg. In the distance the red-painted Forth Railway Bridge pops up. This spectacular rail bridge is one of the greatest engineering achievements of the late Victorian era. It looks like it has to stand up to an earthquake. The saying: « it’s like painting the Forth Bridge » has become a byword for non-stop, repetitive endeavour.

In Edinburgh I have time to go and see an exhibition. ‘Our Dynamic Earth’ takes you on a journey of discovery from the beginning of time to the unknown future of the planet we call home. 4,500 million year in one day! Exactly what I want to see! Later I’m tempted to go and see a film. I haven’t seen one in more than 3 months so I have to get used to it again. I set my mind on a comedy but apparently I don’t understand it too well because from time to time half of the audience is rolling with laughter and I haven’t the faintest idea what they are laughing about!
Majestic Edinburg is full of beautiful buildings that need urgent sandblasting. As a fully-fledged tourist I walk through the busy streets, my guidebook to hand. At the newspaper stand I’m curious to see today’s covers. The British are once more under a spell. Not Nessie but Beckham-mania: « I’m an animal in bed » the headlines of some magazines point out. Is Beckham the perfect reincarnation of Nessie or maybe a Highland bull? Read more about it in tomorrow’s newspaper! Has nothoing more world shocking happened today?



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