Today I have been in the town of Invergordon, to the north of Inverness, to see the cruise liner, Queen Mary 2. Coincidentally, this was the place I spent the first year of my life and have only been back a couple of times since. It's a small town, just a couple of thousand, although relatively pretty and with beautiful views of the Cromarty Firth and the dramatic line-up of oil platforms that rest just off-shore while undergoing repairs and maintenance. The QM2 dwarfed the whole village, and looked very dramatic up close, with the arrival of a couple of thousand rich Americans (or whoever) for a couple of days generating quite a stir in the town. It was like a carnival atmosphere, with street entertainers, craft stalls, all the shops open, and ice-cream vans keeping the mix of locals, tourists and cruisers cool on what has been a lovely warm day.
I went up with a group of friends from church, after all deciding that we would go up to have a look after the morning service today (yes, going to church turns you into that sort of radical, zany, drop-everything, spur-of-the-moment, sort of creature). We had a great time moseying around, and it was quite incredible to see the small town so busy. It's amazing, really – the crowds the boat pulled, you'd think that nothing ever happens in the highlands.
Or maybe just nothing ever happens in Invergordon. Not since I left it 25 years ago, anyway.
In other news, I have five work-days left before going to Australia. I am very excited indeed.