Colourful Scottish Wildcats and other odd things

On Sunday we headed out for a magical mystery tour around the highlands, trying to find the sun as it was a bit miserable where we were. Our first stop was in Newtonmore which is 57 miles away in the Cairngorms National Park. We went into The Wild Flour Cafe which was designed with me in mind as there is a lot of purple throughout and lots of vegetarian options on the menu.

This is the garden of the cafe – I love the frog sitting by the pond which features two purple kettles and a lovely driftwood creation.

After a very filling meal we decided to share a piece of cake as it looked so scrummy – it was date, apple, and coconut and it was delicious.

Here’s something I haven’t done for a while, take a picture in the toilet. I really loved this purple teapot being used for a vase and it looks lovely against the green wall. I think I might have to look out for old teapots at charity shops to create some unique vases of my own.

After lunch we went for a wander around the town to work off some of the calories we’d consumed. We found these two lovely mosaics on one of the buildings – the first one depicts shinty which is a traditional Scottish sport.

After our lunch we also had to feed the third member of our touring party, Bramble. Ken is very good and packs her lunch so that if we’re out too long she won’t get hungry.

As she finished her lunch the dog in the yard beside the carpark decided to bark very loudly which caused Bramble to shoot into the car – look at that adorable little face.

St Bridie’s Parish church

Beautiful red Acer Tree (Japanese maple) in someone’s back yard. Just to the right of the tree you’ll notice an odd looking cat  – it’s part of the wildcat trail throughout the area. They are wildcats painted in different styles and there are over 100 of them. I looked it up when we got home and if you find 25 you get a certificate so I think we might have to go back and take part in this adventure (I know it’s for children but we’re big kids at heart).

We found a few of the cats and it did lead to sudden stops in the car when we spotted them. This one is painted wearing a kilt.

On the front entrance roof of the pub.

I loved this one as it’s painted with a skeleton and is in the garden of an osteopath.

As we headed out of Newtonmore we came across this sign which is in Gaelic and pointing to a cemetery – now my day was complete. To get to the cemetery we walked along the river Calder which was gorgeous and really peaceful.

This is definitely another spot we’ll need to come back to one day with a picnic as it was beautiful, with lots of wild flowers and places to sit.

Highland cows in amongst the flowers.

The trees along the bank of the river were just clinging on to the earth.

Ken and Bramble looking for pretty rocks.

I took a photo of this tree as it had an interesting shape and then played around with the edit feature on my phone – I think it looks really nice in purple tones.

Me smothering Bramble Jelly with some love.

Field of wildflowers.

Here’s a few shots from the lovely graveyard that was at the end of our walk.

What was really sad was that in such a small graveyard in a small community there were quite a lot of graves for young men who had died in the first and second world war.

Lovely sheep near the graveyard.

Here’s a few of the odd things that you see when you’re driving down back roads. Yes, that really is a fake soldier in a sentry box in someone’s yard.

An old car being used as an advertising sign in someone else’s frontyard.

These flags were at a hotel out in the middle of nowhere – it was like they knew we were coming.

Gorgeous gatehouse that we drove past – I love anything with a turret and this looks like quite a manageable size though I’d have to move it somewhere within walking distance of a shop that you can buy your essentials at.

Our next interesting discovery was Laggan Dam which was built in the 1930’s. It was in a remote spot and yet there were several people stopped to take photos including one family that had the dreaded selfie stick and kept trying to fix their hair on a very windy day.

By now we were 80 miles from home so thought we should head back in that direction. It was such a great day but we only found glimpses of the sun in our travels. When we got home the brats descended for some attention but I’m sure the look in their eyes was asking us why we’d brought the wiggling little dog back with us.

Cookie taking up residence on my knee and Muffin staking her place on the arm of the sofa beside me.

Hope you enjoyed coming on this journey with us and until next time be good, stay safe, and have a happy and peaceful week.

Pamela & Ken

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