|Our first stop on Day 6 was
St. Andrews Castle, just a short walk from the Scout Hall.
Unlike all the other castles we'll see this trip, St. Andrews was built
by and used by Bishops of the Church, not nobles or kings. Bishop
Roger of St. Andrews built the original castle here in 1189, and it
was rebuilt several times by his successors.
The castle gatehouse.
Gabe looks down into the Bottle Dungeon - miscreants were lowered by
rope, to live out their lives in this hole.
When the castle was under seige in 1546 by the Earl of Arran, a tunnel
was dug by the besieging forces. A countermine was dug by the
Protestant forces inside, breaking into the tunnel and ending the
attempt. The tunnel and countermine can be explored today - as Warren
|The ruins of St. Andrews
Cathedral are not far from the Castle.
We walked over and spent time at the small museum and wandering
We were supposed to go to a Highland Games in Stonehaven that
afternoon, but the games were canceled due to flooding. Luckily, I
received an e-mail from the organizers just before we left America, so
we didn't drive all the way to Stonehaven. Instead, we drove to
Thornton, which also had a Highland Games scheduled - the same one we
attended in 2010.
|When we arrived in Thornton, though, we
discovered that those games had also been canceled due to flooding.
The only place in Thornton to eat on a Sunday was "Bella, the
Cake Fairy" - which turned out to be a fantastic choice for
lunch. Bella and her family welcomed us in, and the Scouts ate
The lunch worked out so well I decided to splurge on cupcakes for
everyone, which was a great hit.
The Secret Bunker was our "Plan B" for the afternoon. Not
that it could be that much of a secret, with road signs pointing the
way all over Fife, and this truck advertising the facility...
The underground Bunker is under an innocent-looking farmhouse. You
go into the house, and then down a long ramp into the Bunker
|From here, the government
would, theoretically, have governed a post-holocaust Scotland.
In this room, Josh and Gabe watch the RAF Wrens plotting the
flights of fighters. The fact that the Bunker obtained their
mannequins from a defunct fashion store only detracts slightly from
the effect - all of the personnel are in slightly contorted postures,
and look just a bit weird, but maybe the Scottish military planned to
recruit supermodels, who knows?
|We drove down from Fife to
Edinburgh, to stay for the next two days with the 88th Haymarket Scout
Group - and, once again, "thanks for the hospitality!"