Monday, September 23, 2013

Breath-taking in more ways than one


Today was filled with unexpected beauty.

Still walking on clouds after visiting Highclere Castle, I knew we were going to two castles today, but I was not expecting what I encountered. Late in the morning, Lora and I traveled to Glamis Castle. This is the castle of the Queen Mother and is located on a sprawling estate. The current Earl lives onsite, and Lora has seen him on the grounds when she's visited in the past.

The tour guide took us through modern and historic rooms in the castle, including a chapel adorned with beautiful paintings representing Jesus and His disciples. There was something royal and yet not stiff-collared about the castle, and it was a lovely visit.

After eating lunch in the castle café (I had a surprisingly delicious bowl of sweet potato and coriander soup - perfect to warm me up on a chilly day.), we set out for Dunnottar Castle, approximately 45 minutes away. The drive was scenic (as is every drive in Scotland), and we passed fields of hay and sheep. The beauty of the landscape is very difficult to put into words. I go back to my analogy of a rainbow of greens, but add texture to that thought. It's just so alive.

When we arrived at Dunnottar, we parked the car and set out to take pictures. Once the ruins were in view, I realized just how breath-taking this visit was going to be. The beauty of the ruins left me speechless.

I felt like a character in "The Lord of the Rings." Now, add to this beauty the fact that we walked down the face of the "mountain" where I took this picture and then walked up the face of the rock Donnattar stands on in order to walk through the ruins. Hence "breath-taking in more ways than one." It was a great workout!

On the side of the castle, there was not much left of the interior, but the various exterior walls left fantastic portals for pictures.

What a beautiful way to end the day. On the ride home, I considered all we had seen and realized how fortunate I am to have the opportunity to experience these ancient pieces of history. In America, it's hard to find anything older than 200 years. Here, ancient history is visible all around.
Thank You, Lord, for this incredible opportunity.
Favorites: Glamis Castle, sweet potato soup, Dunnottar Castle, beauty

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