Britain 2011 - Day 21
A long drive, but it took us through a lot of rural Scotland. At Dundee our cellphone sprung to life - the first time on the trip and we had a text - urgent - from Budget Rentals, please ring. So we stopped by the Tay Bridge at Dundee and rang. "We need the car back. Can you drop it off at Hearthrow - today?". "If you don't you will incur penalty charges." Sorry, but we have a contract for another 10 days. Try again. "But we really need it - it needs servicing....". Nope, you knew we had it for 20 days. Try another story line. Well, we could swap it at Edinburgh Airport tomorrow morning. "Good, we will arrange it". Yeah right. Apparently they had rented us a car that was close to its maximum mileage. If they return it to the finance company over the mileage limit they get hit an additional cost. (Tough, I thought.) Still, that was now tomorrow's problem.
Braemar is a tourist town in the middle of the highlands. It backs onto Cairngorm National Park so has a few tour buses going through. We stopped there for a look and morning coffee. In the middle of the town is a large hotel - the Fife Arms. They advertised morning teas and they had a nice set of tables outside in the warm sun. So we agreed on two coffees and a piece of cake. The couple in front of us also ordered two coffees and cake, and then to our amazement they asked for some sandwiches "..for Ron". Their accent was hard to catch, but their mention of food for "later-RON" branded then as Sydneyites, and so they were.
Dundee is another large Scottish city built around its port, and made rich by the North Sea oil. We crossed the Tay Bridge and stopped at the park to view the bridge, and to tell Budget they could not have their car back - well, not until tomorrow.
From Dundee the A92 goes south to join the M90 into Edinburgh. But we turned towards the coast to come through Burntisland and Inverkeithing. Both these towns figure in my family history, with many of the Hutchison family living in these parts. From the coast road are good views of Edinburgh and the Forth Bridges.
Last updated: 10/06/2017