That’s how they pronounce Inverness in Gaelic! As I will have said before, it’s a Gaelic name and means mouth of the river Ness. Jackie, our choir conductor, hails from here and calls it Inversnecky – which is apparently a colloquial term for the city -and was where I was visiting at the weekend. My friends Janet and Ray are going on holiday at the end of May, and had asked me if I would cat-sit for the time they are away. “Come up sometime and we’ll discuss it!” Janet emailed me. So on Friday afternoon, I caught the bus from Peebles to Edinburgh, and there transferred to the Inverness bus. I had decided not to take my car, but use my bus-pass, which is a great perk of being 60 plus! We get free travel by bus all over Scotland!
It was a long journey, with the bus calling at various small places en route, meaning several detours off the main road north, the A9 …. and the heating was ferocious! I thought it was just me – my personal thermostat not working again – but no! Another passenger eventually came forward to ask the driver to turn the heating down. (“Down?” he questioned in obvious disbelief! ) He did, but it really didn’t make much difference!
It was around 7.30 in the evening when we finally pulled off the A9 for Inverness city centre. Janet and Ray were waiting for me at the bus station, where I was to meet a decidedly suspicious Sasha, the latest addition to the Smith household, a cross between a Labrador and an Alsatian, I’d say, who tested me out with a few loud and meant-to-be-intimidating barks! By the time we got home though, we were good friends! Her bark was very much worse than her bite! (not that she bites anyway!)
First though we went to try out a new restaurant that had once been what they would have called “a family hotel” when I was growing up. The last time I was there was for the “tea” after my cousin Moira’s funeral a few years ago now, but since then the whole building - except for the front facade - has been demolished and rebuilt. It had only been open again for three days, and being near Janet’s and Ray’s house, was a logical choice. To be honest I can’t recall what I ate, but I know Janet had to send her food back to the kitchen! Oops! Not a good start!
So the evening ended back at home chez Smith with a glass or two of Pinot Grigio, a catch-up on news and a discussion on what to do over the weekend.
Just a couple of photos today, but I’ll have a few more tomorrow! This is Sasha chewing a rubber ball to pieces (right), and (below) Janet with Pickles, the grand old lady I have agreed to look after at the beginning of June.
Talk again soon.