This month is becoming a bit of a lull when it comes to travel. I have had a trip to Glasgow, but as it’s only 60 miles away, that’s not such a big deal.

I’ve also had a long weekend in Bavaria, but that’s more of a regular commute than a big trip. Second home, I suppose.

Last month was good – Bournemouth and Salzburg. Chalk and cheese. Both trips were graced by plenty sunshine – April can be as unpredictable there as it is here.

Poole harbour

Next month is the big Rotary Club outing to Ingolstadt in Bavaria. 15 of us. A rowdy bunch as well. My club is twinned with one of the Ingolstadt clubs, so we visit every 4 years. They visit us every 4 years too. We’ll have day trips to Eichstätt and Regensburg as part of the itinerary. One very much a tourist destination – the other a bit more off the beaten track.


But May…

To add to the dullness of the lull, the May weather has been grim in Scotland – carrying on exactly where April left off, but then I had those two sunny escapes in April!

I had a day trip to Pitlochry on Sunday (a Rotary meeting) and it turned out to be a wee highlight. We’d had 2 days of rain at the end of the week, and then on Saturday afternoon the sun came out. Cold for May, mind you. A tepid 10°c, but sunshine!

In many ways Pitlochry is a microcosm of the Scottish tourist industry. A High Street dedicated to tourism of the cheap and fairly depressing kind – tartan everything and overpriced “bar meals”. Contrast that with the magnificent Perthshire scenery all around.

Ethiopia meets the Highlands

As I came into town early on Sunday, I had a magical coffee break by the River Tummel watching some anglers set up and taking in my surroundings.

The meeting was in one of those traditional Scottish “palace” type hotels, to be found in towns like Pitlochry all over the country. Sedate and genteel, but fun is not part of the programme. Having said that, it was a great venue. Excellent lunch, wonderful grounds…

the Palace

Afterwards I went a few miles north to the Pass of Killiecrankie and walked the rain/meeting/grumpiness out of my system along the River Garry. Fresh air, beautiful surroundings, a bit of warmth and a little exercise.


Not much left of May now!

© iain taylor 2012

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