Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Old Postcard Wednesday--The Path by the Loch, Loch Katrine, Scotland

Loch Katrine is located in the natural setting known as The Trossachs in Scotland. Some preliminary info follows (highlighting added):
The Trossachs (About this sound listen Scottish Gaelic, Na Trosaichean) itself is a small woodland glen in the Stirling council area of Scotland. It lies between Ben A'an to the north and Ben Venue to the south, with Loch Katrine to the west and Loch Achray to the east. However, the name is used generally to refer to the wider area of wooded glens and braes with quiet lochs, lying to the east of Ben Lomond. [Source: Wikipedia]
"Trossachs" was originally the name of a small area between lochs Achray and Katrine but the National Park Authority has given the name 'Trossachs' to the scenic triangle bounded by the head of Loch Katrine, Aberfoyle and Callander and north to Strathyre and Balquhidder.

The Trossachs was the haunt of the highland caterans who hid in its secret glens, and after whom Loch Katrine is reputed to be named - though some say it was named after a lady of that name! Rob Roy MacGregor brought his 'lifted' cattle through the 'Bealach nam Bo' (or ‘pass of the cattle’) on the south side of Loch Katrine and the Trossachs Pass through which the modern access road now leads. [Source: The Trossachs Scotland]

As I began reading information about this old postcard I realized how very little I know about Scotland. For instance, the reference about Rob Roy MacGregor and his 'lifted' cattle means nothing to me in any historical sense. When I read it I immediately thought about my stepfather who, when I was a child, worked as a bartender in a Reno casino, and who talked about the alcoholic drink named Rob Roy, e.g., "The couple from Sacramento were in again tonight, again asking for my special Rob Roys." In my child's mind, knowing, as I did, the non-alcoholic drink called Roy Rogers (usually made for boys because little girls drank Shirley Temples), I figured that Rob Roy must have been Roy Rogers' daddy, or boss, in the cocktail kingdom.

You may know that I do not drink alcohol any longer, having done so to excess in my post-Shirley-Temple days, but when I did consume alcohol in my past I never tried a Rob Roy. In honor of the stepfather who, though totally emotionally ill-equipped for the job, did his best as a daddy here is a recipe for Rob Roy cocktails:

The name Rob Roy pops up again in the source quoted earlier, The Trossachs Scotland! See below:
The Trossachs in Scotland and Loch Katrine have been known for their scenic attractions ever since Sir Walter Scott wrote 'Rob Roy' and 'The Lady of the Lake' in the early nineteenth century. Sir Walter visited the Trossachs and stayed near Loch Katrine with his wife Charlotte and daughter Sofia in 1819. Knowing something of the history and legends, he was moved to write 'The Lady of the Lake'. The work was completed and published in May 1810. The Trossachs became better known through this publication and as transport improved, the area became a popular tourist destination.
Again, I must plead - if not ignorance - then a lack of exposure to, or interest in, the works of Sir Walter Scott. Sigh.... I am currently reading Death of the Liberal Class, by Chris Hedges, after which I have two more books already lined up to read next. But I am curious about The Lady of the Lake, both the history and legends that moved Sir Walter to write the book, and the book itself. Maybe I will read it some day. The most perfect place in the world to read The Lady of the Lake would be here, aboard the Steam Ship Sir Walter Scott sailing the waters of Loch Katrine (full information click):

I surely have blogging friends who are knowledgeable in all things Scotland (one, Freda, lives there!) and all things Sir Walter Scott. Leave extra tidbits of information in comments, please! In the meantime, for those of you who are like me and have some studying to do here are some links to get us going:



Don't Feed The Pixies said...

Rob Roy is, of course, a Scottish hero, but i have to admit ignorance as to exactly why. Probably fought us rotten English, curse us! Wikipedia refers to him as the Scottish Robin Hood, which confirms my theory that 'lifted' is a euphamism for stolen - as in lifting someone's wallet from their pocket

There was a film about him starring Liam Neeson - might be worth a look?

Looking to the Stars said...

OMG, Lydia this is the best post ever. I have ALWAYS wanted to go to Scotland. I knew I was in heaven when I saw all the links you had put in. Thank you, I will enjoy each and every one of them :) The very first being, The Lady Of The Lake :)

Thanks again!

Kristen Haskell said...

Very interesting post. I too need to read Lady in the Lake. There so much to learn...

naomi dagen bloom said...

So I clicked on the video and was completely distracted. In truth already distracted by the many nuggets in this post. As a temperate drinker, I was grossed out by the concoction described by the charming bartender.

Have you tried the Italian sodas now offered at Starbucks? Had a Hazelnut one at school yesterday--not bad, at least minus caffeine the other addiction.

Reading Chris Hedges might lead many to stronger drink.

Kim said...

I love this postcard! It has so much emotion packed into a picture--so much feeling. I love it when that happens.

Lydia said...

Pixies~ If the film stars Liam Neeson then it definitely is worth taking a look. I admire his work.
Your explanation of the use of "lifted" sure makes sense to me. :)

Looking to the Stars~ Darn, my Powerball ticket was not a winner on Wednesday. If it had been a big winner I would have sent you two on a trip to Scotland (and might have met you in some town there to eat Scotch eggs and swap travel stories). Nice to dream!

Kristen~ Yes, so much to learn and so much to see and one lifetime is not enough time. :(

naomi~ "Grossed out" describes my reaction to the drink too, in spite of the bartender's obvious love for the mix.
No, I have not tried Starbucks' Italian sodas and thank you for the tip! I should take Chris Hedges' book along with me so the soda might sweeten up the topic a bit...

Kim~ I love that you enjoyed the postcard so much. It really is lovely, almost worthy of framing. :)



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