Sunday, July 01, 2007

Away Again

This is the first of the couple dozen weekends I can look forward to in Aberdeen, the location of my latest job assignment. This posting is so far the most distant from the land where I was born, a tropical place of palm trees, heat, and humidity.

Aberdeen is in the northeast of Scotland, on the coast facing the North Sea. A summer here means overcast skies and almost certain rain, with perhaps a few hours of direct sunlight.

Woods, low hills, and farms with sheep and cattle surround the city.

Aberdeen is renowned as the granite city of Scotland, and it obligingly looks the part, from the road of King Street, close where I stay, to the bar and restaurant haven of Belmont Street.

The square at Castlegate

Marischal College, the second largest granite building in the world.

Shops and pubs fill the listed buildings of Belmont Street

The similar hues of the streets, structures, and sky certainly aren’t the most immediately enchanting.
As with any place, once must take a closer look to appreciate the different textures and to find the vibrancy in the people themselves and in the things they chose to have around them.
Union Street and the surrounding area form the main retail district.

As one may expect in England, and apparently farther north as well, there are many gardens, public and private.

The people of Aberdeen supported the Scotish resistance against the English, led by Scotland's greatest hero, William Wallace. This statue of the man, overlooking the Union Terrace Gardens, below, presents a more fashionable figure than the woolly and wild-haired character played by Mel Gibson.

The Gordon Highlander museum presents the history of a distinguished military unit that was formed for the Napoleanic Wars and has served the Kingdom for the next 200 years.

The people of Aberdeen may be more fortunate than most to be able to live with so much of their history around them.

And I can’t help but appreciate a place that puts so much thought into their drinking establishments

If one must admit to anything illicit, it may as well be this one.

There are other adventures and attractions throughout Scotland, even other than a plate of haggis, neeps, and taties, and I hope to visit them in time.
Other pictures are located here