When we were in Strathpeffer, Alex hitting golf balls and me driving a buggy, the Pro Shop was peopleless when we’d finished (probably the pro had gone home to sit by his fire) so Alex wasn’t able to get any trinkets. We went back this morning to remedy that then stopped in Dingwall for a last supper at Grants Café.
Mark, the shorter, had an orthodontist appt. so it was about 3:30 when we arrived in Aviemore. Colin and Ali had their clubs out ready so when “The Boys” went off to play at Carr Bridge Lena and I went for a walk to find a cache or two. We walked along the main road then up through the Centre. I decided that Aviemore looks different now because all the action is in the village and the Centre just seems to be a cluster of Hotels. When we lived there all the action was in The Centre. There was a Swimming Pool, Ice Rink, Restaurants, Sports Shops and Ski School offices etc then in Santa Claus Land there were heaps of little shops, amusements and, of course, a resident Santa. We walked to the Dry Ski Slope which is still up in the Centre and there is a small Climbing Wall but it certainly wasn’t a bustling place like the town is now.
My search for the cache took us up and across the new A9 then through a field and into a Birch Wood. Lena found the cache quite easily then we walked through the Wood, along a path between Loch Puladdern and Craig Ellachie. In the 7 years I lived there I’d never been that way but it was a really lovely walk. We walked back towards the old A9 and past the Youth Hostel where I stayed when I first arrived in Aviemore, the building is a nice new stone one now. The second cache we found was on the old bridge over The Spey River, the fastest flowing river in Scotland. As we walked back along the back road we passed the place where the Registrar of Births, Deaths, and Marriages lived. The old board where “The Banns” were posted is still on the wall. Our banns were posted there and nobody knew because the place isn’t on the main road so unless you went out of your way you’d never see them. I remember Alex’s mum saying confidently we couldn’t get married because our banns hadn’t been posted but they actually were. They had to be on display for two weeks before a marriage could take place, that was supposed to allow time for anyone to make objections.
We walked back past the “Butcher’s Burn” where in the long ago the butcher used to dress the meat using the nice clean, clear water. By then we were ready for a warming drink so stopped at Cobb’s Café before heading back out the road towards Milton Park. We had time to visit the lovely, new school, new Fire Station and the Stone Circle before The Boys returned. They all swore they hadn’t been cold even Colin, who was wearing shorts.