TAILS OF A TRAVELLING CAT
Greetings, humans! So, today’s trip was to Perth, as you will know from the title. We took a bus to China town, sorry, Edinburgh city centre, and then myself and Charlie boarded the tiny two-carriage ScotRail train to Perth. I’ve never seen a train so small, seems suspicious.
We left Edinburgh heading north where we crossed the world famous Forth Bridge, shame we were on it and couldn’t actually see it, but the road bridge next to it was very nice, especially the new one. I was ignoring the water, like any self-respecting cat.
We had now arrived in Fife where we stopped at some stations with fantastic names such as Inverkiething, Kirkcaldy (Kih-coddy), Ladybanks before arriving at Perth for lunchtime.
There were some spectacular mountainous views from the train and a huge hill right next to Perth. On leaving the train station we could see the tree-clad hill rising high above the town/ city (I don’t know) and Charlie spontaneously decided to climb it. This meant crossing the River Tay, which was huge and, not surprisingly, full of water. There were three visible bridges, Charlie foolishly took the longest one which was the train bridge, a small foot bridge attached precariously to its side, held up with scaffolding. This bridge not only crossed the river at its widest point, but also veered off at an alarming angle away from the town making it even longer.
Well, we finally got back to dry land, not a moment too soon, and wandered along the side of the river part way up the hill. We stopped for lunch here (too much water), then headed off due east to get up the hill.
We didn’t really know where we were going, so Charlie followed the ingenious but foolish strategy of just walking in the direction of the hill.
After trekking uphill through residential streets and passing the first casual kilt wearer I have ever met, we eventually found the Kinnoull Hill Woodland Park, and a helpful sign informing us the summit was ¾ mile away. We took a break to enjoy the view back to Perth, then headed up, now hidden among the trees like the elusive wildcat I am! There were many sculptures of woodland creatures which I realised were sculptures because they didn’t run screaming from the approaching wildcat (and they were huge).
Soon, we emerged out of the trees onto a cliff edge with amazing views of mountains and tiny model villages all around us. We sat and enjoyed the view before discovering this was not, in fact, the summit. Fortunately, it was less than 100m away and provided a panorama view of the mountains. There was also one of those helpful circles which informed us as to which mountains we were actually looking at.
It was a wee bit breezy up the top, I almost blew away, and that would have rather ruined the trip.
Anyway, we then headed back down the giant of a mountain (ok, hill) to meet Hannah, a uni friend of Charlie’s.
After discovering there wasn’t all that much to do in Perth, we headed off to see Hannah’s horse, Mikey, who was twenty years old today. Happy birthday, horse!
I don’t know much about horses, but he was grey and speckly and not too impressed at being brought out of the field into his stable. A hard choice that, bed or food?
Mikey stabled for the night, we then returned to Perth for dinner. Our first attempt was Kiso’s which, although it served vegan food, was fully booked – what do you expect walking in on a Saturday night without booking a table? It was a very fancy looking place, but the food seemed reasonably priced.
We then tried Tabla, which could just about fit us in, as long as we were finished by 8:00 for another booking – no problem, it was only 6:30 now.
The humans had a starter of poppadoms (which were huge) and mango chutney. Charlie then tucked into vegetable jalfrezi (cauliflower, potatoes, onions, asparagus, most veg in the world really) with mushroom pilau rice, and Hannah had a chicken korma with plain rice (for all those meat eaters out there). Both meals were absolutely huge portions, both humans were stuffed!
Although so full, the humans were interested to see what an Indian dessert might be and considered just looking over the menus to broaden their cultural and culinary horizons, but then realised it was nearly pumpkin hour, the people who had reserved the table would be here and Charlie and I had a train to catch. We had to rush a little but we made it, though.
We wisely decided to sit on the other side of the train to this morning to enjoy a different view. Big mistake – this was the east side, more water here! How long did we spend next to the Forth or the sea or whatever this is?
Anyway, we made it back to Edinburgh safely, got the bus back and time for me to go to bed – what a tiring day!
It’ll be a tour of Edinburgh tomorrow, I want to find some tartan.
Greetings, humans! Ah, it’s good to be back, ready for another trip, once more getting my Charlie to type up my witty ramblings. If you're new to Tails of a Travelling Cat (where have you been? You've missed so much) you can find out more about me (I am truly wonderful) on the About Me (and My Humans) Page, and also in the Before We Begin post at the start of the Europe Edition. I'll wait for you to catch up if you need to, but be quick, I don't have all day.
Right, now if you're up to speed, or have been a good human and were already conversant on who I am through having read the Europe Edition when it was published, let me introduce this second trip.
We’re off to Scotland, Edinburgh to be precise, another capital city. This time it is just myself and Charlie embarking on this trip, however we are staying with Charlie’s aunt, Sue, and uncle, Stuart, so I suppose they will probably feature in this Edition.
I’m looking forward very much to this trip, it will be highly cat based and involve an aeroplane and some trains. I am a fan of this long distance travelling lark, although I would be a rather poor Travelling Cat if I wasn't now, wouldn’t I?
We will be based in Edinburgh, where we will visit Edinburgh Zoo and hopefully see their wildcats – my less stripy, and less pink, cousins.
On this trip we will also visit the Highland Wildlife Park (it’s over two hours away, my longest journey by car, although compared to some of those European trains, not a problem, one hopes). Here, we will see many wondrous cats – I have been promised Pallas’ cats, lynxes, Amur tigers, snow leopards – and some other animals. If we’re lucky, we might even get to meet some important, high-up people involved in conservation of the beautiful, majestic, prowling, Critically Endangered Scottish wildcat. How few remain? We’ll find out in the next few days.
Anyway, it will not all be cat based (unfortunately), there’s also a trip planned over the mighty Forth Bridge to Perth, or perhaps Dundee, maybe here we will meet up with one of Charlie’s uni friends, maybe we won’t, oh, the suspense.
We will also probably visit Edinburgh Castle like all good tourists and I’m sure some other historical delights. Those good people who have read the Europe Edition, will fondly remember my well informed and mostly accurate history lessons.
Well, that seems to sum up what’s going on as I know so far. I’m all packed and ready to go. And I get to try a new airport, Stansted, this time, exciting stuff.
Until then, folks,