On the Monday, we took the coast roads to explore Fishing Villages, eating honeybee sweets and mint colonials along the way. There’s lots of geology going on around here, and from down on the beaches you can see the many-coloured bones of the hills in cliffs above.
Principal planned attraction for the day was the lighthouse museum at Fraserburgh. Sadly, to get there you needed to get through Fraserburgh, which is the poster boy for fishing towns that have seen better days: utterly dreary, miserable and dying, all its life and charm replaced by commercial machinery that’s now unused and idle. The museum itself was fascinating, full of those huge multi-piece refracting lenses and a million interesting things I didn’t know about lighthouses, and finished with a tour of the Kinnaird Head lighthouse. They had kept the old tower as spick and span as when it had still been in use (a smaller, more modern, steel and plastic house now shines), and the light itself, all polished brass, thick glass and intricate iron, was so smooth on its bearings I could turn it with a single finger.
Dad had something wrong and painful with his back, needing to see a spinemongler in Elgin on the Wednesday, and Nick and I were both feeling seriously burned out (and me slightly unwell), so the 3rd and 4th were mostly wasted. Apart from a (fruitless; they needed photo ID and their computers were running IE5 or some shit) trip to the Elgin Library, we spent two days florping around listlessly, sleeping, eating and watching The Wire. I’ve finished the second season and am now starting on the third. You shouldn’t really need me to tell you this, but shit’s awesome.
I stayed up to see the purported aurora, but had no idea which way was north or what exactly I was looking for. Apart from a faint green tinge on one horizon, nothing stood out, and I went back to bed.