I told M that I wanted to take David to see the sock tree. I had driven past it many times but never stopped to check it out. Off we went again with our piece of paper with places to go. Clootie Well is not far from Fred and M’s house, so we started there.
The Clootie Well is a rather weird remnant of an ancient tradition once commonly found in Scotland and Ireland, of holy wells to which pilgrims would come and make offerings, usually in the hope of having an illness cured. The tradition dates far back into pre-Christian times, to the practice of leaving votive offerings to the local spirits or gods in wells and springs. With the arrival of Christianity, the practice was simply adapted to the new circumstances.
The holy well at Munlochy is said to date back to – and probably beyond – the time of St Boniface or Curitan, who worked as a missionary in Scotland in about AD620. Pilgrims would come, perform a ceremony that involved circling the well sunwise three times before splashing some of its water on the ground and making a prayer. They would then tie a piece of cloth or “cloot” that had been in contact with the ill person to a nearby tree.
As the cloot rotted away the illness would go away as was believed back then. They even would leave their children there over night in hopes of making them well. Not sure if that worked or not because I think it would have scared them more than anything else. It is a very eerie place.
Today people leave pieces of clothing but they are made from man-made material and don’t rot away. David said the whole place smelled of mildew from all the damp clothing. This isn’t great for the environment but people still believe that it might work, so they leave all kinds of articles of clothing.
David and I tied a couple of Fred’s socks to a limb. I wonder if that means Fred will get double healing, since we tied his sock there. I hope he can be fixed but I doubt that there is anything that can cure him of crazy.
Our next stop which will be a big surprise to everyone was Black Isle Brewery. We were given a tour by one of the brewers, Sandy.
This is from their site
Welcome to Black Isle. We are the UK’s premier organic brewery, making world-class beers from the finest organic malt and hops grown on farms without chemicals, just as nature intended.
We have our own organic farm where we grow malting barley for brewing and even have our own brewery house cow, who eats the malt from the brewery mash tun and gives us 20 pints of fresh, creamy milk every day.
Based near Inverness, this is our beautiful, unspoiled, unpolluted, wild, and more than a little bit wet highland home – and we love it!
It was a great place. Well worth a visit. They have won several awards for their beers.
Fred got to talking to the girl that waited on us and she mentioned she had written a couple of books. Fred got into telling her about his film studio he was starting. We finally managed to pull him away so we could go on our next adventure. One of the lighthouses on Moray Firth.
The dolphins were out but were not playing so I didn’t get any pictures of them. It was a nice day, so I did get some nice photos.
The last stop of the day was at Clava Cairns. There is not a whole lot known about the cairns except that they are believed to be around 4000 years old. It is believed that they were used for burial. I just always thought it was a peaceful place but the day we went there were several tours there. I guess it is now a tourist attraction. I just thought of it as a cool park in the country.
There are a lot of stones circles and cairns all over Scotland. Many people have them on their land. They just don’t say anything about them because they want to be left alone.
Well the boys did pretty good on this day because we were out of the car a lot. They tried to make up for it when the got back in the car by talking even more.
We headed back home after the cairns where Fred cooked yet another good meal.