I loathe telling "lay" people that I know anything about British history. Invariably, they'll enthuse about Henry VIII or the medieval period and I then have to explain that my interest is confined to roughly the time period from 1750-1950. I freely admit that I know very little, almost nothing, about anything that transpired prior to that. I don't mind in the least admitting what I don't know. Take Scotland, for instance. I know nothing about Scotland other than it's where they drink whiskey, which I hate, and eat shortbread, which I love. To be honest, almost all I know about Scotland is that which involves Queen Victoria. Which is why I have enlisted the help of my old pal, Sue Ellen Welfonder, to help me plan Number One London's Scottish Castles and Palaces Tour. She has been a gold mine of information and suggestions and will be joining me on my trip to Scotland in September to scout out locations for the tour. Knowing my great affection for Queen Victoria, Sue Ellen suggested that we go to the Ardverikie Estate.
"Since we'll be in the area and passing right by, we can stop and see the Ardverikie Estate when we're in Scotland," Sue Ellen proposed.
"Yeah. Whatever you want to do. Scotland is all you."
"It's really pretty. It sits on the shores of Loch Laggan."
"It should interest you. Queen Victoria considered it when she was looking for a place in Scotland, but decided on Balmoral instead," Sue Ellen elaborated in an effort to garner a bit more enthusiasm from me.
"There were too many midges about when she visited and they put her off the property."
"So now, instead of being a Royal residence, Ardverikie has to settle for being Glenbogle."
"Wait . . . What?"
"There's this Scottish television show called Monarch of the Glen and . . . "
"Are you kidding me? Glenbogle? We're actually going to Glenbogle?"
"You mean you know Monarch of the Glen?"
"Know it? I love Monarch of the Glen. I've seen every episode. Hector, Archie, Julian Fellowes! Can we go inside? Can we?"
"No! It's a private house now, but we can walk over the bridge by the gate house and follow a trail that will bring us up fairly close to the house."
"Oh, I can hardly stand it!"
"Well, who knew you'd be so excited to see something Scottish," Sue Ellen said.
Who knew, indeed. It appears I know more about Scotland than I'd first thought. Hoot man, I cannae wait to get there! We're UK bound on September 18th, stopping in London for a few days before flying on to Edinburgh. You can stay up to date with all of our travels on my Facebook Page.
Do you have a favourite place in Scotland? Somewhere that speaks to your heart? Somewhere you long to visit? Let us know by leaving a comment here.