Monday, February 22, 2016

Soup, sea glass, and a pet cemetery

Even though this is a new home for us, the Highlands is somewhere that we've had some fantastic holidays in the past, so today we went to revisit a couple of these spots.  Several years ago we had a wonderful week in Portnockie, and then another year we stayed in Findochty (pronounced Finechity - I know, the Scottish language is a bit weird).

Today we drove east along the coast to Cullen, which is, as the sign says, the home of Cullen Skink - a very thick fish soup with smoked haddock and potato.  The sign is under the old railway bridge, which is now part of the coastal walking track.

Looking down the main street of Cullen - our lovely pugsley (the little red Peugeot) just getting in the picture.

We had lunch in a really sweet cafe and of course we had to have the food that Cullen is famous for and I had Irn Bru (pronounced Iron Brew and is considered the Scottish national drink, after Whisky) for my drink - how Scottish am I?

Pretty decoration in the cafe - they had lots of lovely gifts for sale, and I was very tempted.

Our next stop was to the beautiful Cullen pet cemetery. Sorry, you know if there's a cemetery worth visiting I will be there.  This cemetery has been in use for over 20 years, and is a really special spot on the sea front.  There are all sorts of animals buried there and it's a real mixture of hand written headstones to shop bought ones.

Here are three cat ones that I really liked, especially the top one for Wee George who lived to be 20.

I'm guessing Sweety Pie was a rabbit, and I love the simplicity but beauty of this grave marker.

We couldn't see the name of the animal on this one, but loved the effort that had gone into it - sea glass, shells, amethyst, and rose quartz.  This pet was obviously very loved.

This next grave is lovely as it shows respect to natures creatures - it is a shark that was killed by a boat, and someone has given them a proper burial.  Love it!!

Looking across the cemetery.

We then went for a walk along the beach, where there were many puppy dogs out for a play.  Lots of gorgeous spaniels which always makes us miss our Bertie Boo.

A rugged up selfie.

Looking along the beach to Cullen.

Another shot of the walking track from below.

We drove through Portnockie and then stopped in Findochty to go sea glass hunting, as it has a great beach for this. Ken was very cheeky and took a picture of me with my bottom in the air, but luckily for him it's from a distance.

I love the colourful houses in this part of the Highlands, here's just a few that we liked.

The one below is my perfect house because it's purple, and what you can't see is that they have a cat sticker on one of the windows, and the door knocker is a cat.

We then went into a (very) local pub to warm up a bit.  The people were really friendly but Ken was struggling a bit to understand their accents, whereas me, the Australian, had no trouble.  Maybe it's because the more along the coast you go towards Aberdeen, the more my ancestry kicks in.  And yes, we are drinking hot liquid in a pub.

Findochty harbour with the boats up out of the water.

Tides out.

Hope you've enjoyed this tour along the Moray coast, and it's definitely a great place for a holiday, but maybe in the summer time.

Until next time, be happy, stay safe, and take a moment to think of five things you're grateful for.

Pamela and Ken

P.S:  Final shot is Princess Cookie chilling in her cave.