Saturday, August 16, 2008

oh, neglected blog of mine

Well, this has been my first long gap from the old blog but I do have a few excuses up my sleeve.  The main excuse is that we went away for a few days to Aberfeldy.  While we were there, we went to the highland games that we had enjoyed so much three years ago.  I am pleased to say that this year's event lived up to our memories!
Early in the day we saw the parade of vintage tractors.
The winner was the green one on the end, and here is its lovely John Deere logo close up.
I watched lots and lots of fabulous highland dancing.  
Taking photos has made me realise how much time these girls spend in mid-air.

The various competitions were brilliant.  Some, like this egg contest...
...were brilliant because they seemed so strange to us who are so uninitiated in the methods of raw egg judgement.

Some, like this miniature garden competition for children...
...were brilliant because of the finished products.  This garden was the winner but I have to say they were all amazing.

The array of vegetables was mouthwateringly and eye-poppingly impressive.
We satisfied our appetites with home baking from the WI stall.

I also enjoyed getting up close and personal with lots of farm animals, like this sheep.  I love how her eyes are right at the corners of her big triangular head.  
One of the best moments of the day for me, was the performance by The Drakes of Hazard.  This was a high voltage display of sheep-dog herding using ducks instead of sheep.  The ducks were sent round a highly dangerous assault course which included leaping off the tower of doom and going through the tunnel of darkness.  Quote of the day (from the human element of this daredevil group): "Nothing awaits them in the tunnel but darkness - I have seen ten ducks go in and only five come out..."  Here are the drakes going down their helter skelter:
There were lots of events for the burly kilt clad men.  Throwing this big jabby rock makes the Olympic shot put look so dull...
Some caber tossing:
And the ultimate event of the day, the Menzies Stone:
This stone weighed over 250 pounds and these men had to pick it up and carry it as far as they could around the race track.  Many men failed while others got red faces, bulging veins and various injuries to haunt them in later life.
The stone is so heavy, they had to get another strong man in to push the barrow back to the starting line!
My pictures of the tug of war did not do it any justice.  You could actually taste testosterone in the air.  One man put so much effort in that he promptly vomited in front of the hundreds of spectators.  Amazing.

I'm planning to put lots more photos of the event on my flickr at some point over the weekend so hop on over there if this just wasn't highland enough for you!


  1. Hi Laura

    I,m the duck master that belongs to the drakes of hazard I was just surfing and came across your blog must say I like the picture of the drakes I have been trying to get a decent pic of them on the helter skelter and I was wondering if you would mind me using on my web site look forward to hearing from you cheers mark

  2. I'd be delighted for you to use the picture, Mark! I will email it to you in its original bigger size. The Drakes of Hazard were one of the highlights of my summer - I hope I'll get to see the show again some day! Thanks for visiting my blog.



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