Thursday, October 16, 2014

Stirling Castle, Scotland

After finding out from the Visitor Centre at Loch Lomond that there was a castle "nearby", we decided to visit it. But the Scots has a very strange sense of distance. Nearby was actually more than an hour drive away! But we got to see our very first castle so I guess it was worth the drive.

This was the first view of the castle when we reached.

 The castle sits on top of a hill and has a nice view of the surrounding

All respectable castle must have a good defence and a solid rock cliff is one of them.

And canons too!

Europeans like nudes and there are nude statues all over. Wonder what is this guy doing?

This is the hiding and resting area for the soldier during war time. Unfortunately sometime the walls collapse and kill them while they are inside

There is a large chapel with a big altar. For worship or sacrifice?

These ceilings are awesome. Apparently they are medallions handed down over the years and are of royalties from UK and Europe.

The tapestries are just as beautiful.

 Nice castle with a nice history and lot of stuff to see if you are into history. You can find out more about the castle here

Monday, October 13, 2014

Loch Lomond, Scotland

The most famous place in Scotland is probable Loch Ness, home of the mythical Lock Ness Monster. Naturally that was on our must visit list until all the locals we spoke to told us not to waste our time travelling there. So in the end, instead of Loch Ness, we ended up at Loch Lomond.

Loch Lomond is the largest lake in mainland Britian - i.e. England and Scotland and is about 71 sq km in surface area. Certainly it was big cause we could see that it stretches on and on and even when we were driving up to the highlands, we keep passing signs pointing to Loch Lomond.


We decided that the earliest way to explore it is to take one of the short cruise. There are different cruises available including sunset dinner cruise but we had only time for short cruise. What we saw on this little cruises were beautiful houses along the river banks. Most of them have been converted to hotels and it seems celebrities from all over the world flock here to stay and escape from the crowd.

 

There was even an island which is Scotland's first naturist island! Unfortunately we didn't get to land there to take in the "sights" although I am sure with the bitter cold wind, there won't be any brave soul baring all on the other.

Anyway, there are plenty of other kind of birds, the real kind that is. Seagull, ducks are in abundance flying all over the place.


But what really got M excited was the first sighting of black berries! And there were plenty of them growing wild all over the places. 
 

At Balloch, the part of Loch Lomond that we were at, there was a small Bird of Prey Centre and naturally we had to go in and see and we got up close to many beautiful owls and eagles. More photos will be posted up on my Facebook Check it out there..

We also discovered an automated toilet.

Visitor has to put in the correct fee and the door will open.....and the toilet cleans by itself. How about that!

From Loch Lomond, we moved on to our first castle......

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Glasgow, Scotland

What is there to see in Glasgow? To be honest nothing much. Just lots and lots of old building. From Victorian era apartments to Gothic style buildings that resemble castles and palaces. And most of them look alike like those in those photos.

An office building in Buchanan Street

A shopping complex in Glasgow Town Centre

A coffee joint in another converted building

Gallery of Modern Arts

Glasgow City Chamber in George Square

Main building of University of Glasgow

Kelvingrove Museum



Saturday, October 4, 2014

The Vocal Majority vs the Silent Minority

It would appear that the whole Singapore is unhappy with the policy on CPF, the transport system and generally everything about the PAP government judging from the numerous rantings on social media. And practically every social political web pages are anti-PAP. So it would seems that way doesn't it?

Likewise in Hongkong. Judging from the thousand of protesters gathered in the various places in downtown Hongkong, it would seem that the whole of Hongkong are with the students and want the China government to give Hongkong more independence. But then somewhere along the line, some detractors have came out strongly against the protesters so it looks like not everybody is with the protesters after all.

We were in Scotland during the last 2 weeks leading up to the referendum vote for independence from the United Kingdom. Everywhere we go, we see people campaigning for the "Yes" (independence) camp. There were street rallies, marches, flags, posters everywhere, on the street, in the shop, at farmland and we even saw a Yes sign in the middle of a farmland and the sea.

These are just some of the photos we took of the campaigning.









In contrast, we can hardly see any campaigning for the "No" camp. There was this brave chap who could go up to people with the YES sign and try to speak to them. All he got was nasty looks.


So it would seems that the majority of the Scots want independence. But yet we know that was not the case cos in the end the referendum motion was defeated by a majority vote. And a quite significant margin too. 

So things are what it seems when there are a lot of people who kpbu everyday. Never ever underestimate the power of the silent majority.

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