Scotland 2015: Day 20

People have asked me about how much technology I have with me or what my routines are. It’s pretty simple. I have a Microsoft Surface Pro Laptop/Tablet computer with me and every night I copy onto it: 1) Memory card from Pentax camera 2) Photos from iPhone 3) Panoramas from Ricoh Theta. I also download my GPS log and convert it into a GPX file. I then copy all of the days data onto two external hard drives. So that’s my data.

Charging wise: Laptop and Pentax Battery in the wall and via my USB charging hub: My Internet Hotspot, Apple Watch, iPhone (not pictured – duh), GPS logger, Ricoh Theta and USB fan (for my comfort and the white noise).

I have 3 lenses but really only use 2 (10mm-20mm) and (18mm-200mm) and I also have a WiFi SD card which I only use if I need to remote the Pentax camera (usually attached to a monopod balanced on my chest). As a rule I don’t use a tripod but for matching the prints I am making an exception. It is a walking stick that converts to a tripod. Barely a tripod – barely a monopod either – but it has been useful in the tough hiking!  Everything else is about protection and cleaning supplies, in total much smaller than you think.

And it’s raining!

Eggs Benedict with salmon and porridge!!! Mmmm
Saw this sign at a castle today. Look how friendly…  shivers…
Remember that rain I mentioned? The roads were flooded all over the place!

My first stop in the rain. Easy angle, though a very unusual one. This is not a place most would stand. Church #28 – Print #34 – Dryburgh Abbey.
The second print of Dryburgh Abbey looks nothing like the reality of being here. At first, I took the closest angle I could guess. Then I walked around and around and realized that the engraver didn’t understand what the artist probably drew and tried to fix the geometries (incorrectly). Trying to get into the artists head, I finally found the rightest spot!!! Print #35.
No print here but it was right around the corner from the last place and a must see. Church #29 – Melrose Abbey.
They were prepping for a wedding! At a ruin, how romantic.
What a gargoyle: A pig playing the bagpipes!
The Heart of Robert The Bruce! Now I’ve seen the whole thing!
It really is a great ruin!
I have a long drive today so I grabbed some take away… Haggis is good!
Gorgeous right? Castle #62 – Caerlaverock Castle.

Another great example of one artist working from another. The print of Caerlaverock Castle is both impossible and improbable. It is impossible to see everything there at once (including the arch in the car park which I got in by fudging on the angle. More importantly, everything in the print looks parallel to the plane but the entire castle is designed in 45 degree angles which the engraver just didn’t get. Print #36.

Great angle. Shame about the car but then again it sort of dates the photo too 🙂 Church #30 – Print #37 – Sweetheart Abbey.
Another great shot of the ruin!

In the middle of farm country, in the middle of nowhere. It is hard to stand back very far! Lag Tower – Castle #63 – Print #38.

Friars Carse should have been easy.  Sitting in Cleveland, I Googled it and found the operational Friars Carse Country House Hotel. Said to myself – check – it exists and put it on my list.

Then I get to the Friars Carse Country House Hotel, where people are preparing for a traditional Scottish wedding – all the men and boys in dress Kilts. I figured to avoid interrupting I would walk in and ask where my print was taken from. I walk into the hotel and on the wall is a picture of my print – so I am feeling pretty good.  And then I asked and then they answered.

My print is dated, 1789. This painting by Alexander Nasmyth for Robert Riddell is dated 1787. However in 1771 Robert Riddell pulled down the old and ruinous buildings to create room for a new mansion, which itself was completely rebuilt in 1873.   I’m in the right spot at the right building – it just doesn’t look the same. That’s all. Frairs Carse – Castle #64 – Print #39. But it gets better! The great Scottish poet Robert Burns wrote Auld Lang Syne here!

One last funny story. On my long drive across the southern border, as I race to get these prints done and head north again, I see a sign that says “Welcome to England” and I was like No!! But then a few minutes later another sign that said “Welcome to Scotland” and since I didn’t get out of the car I can honestly say I didn’t set foot in England this trip!

Scotland 2015 Totals
Days: 20
Prints: 39
Castles: 64
Churches: 30
Historic: 16
Nature: 10
Prehistoric: 8
Map Day 20: Dryburgh to Stranraer