The entrance to the dock in Aberdeen was quite tight but that was no problem for Captain Heidi and her bridge team. It was very pleasant to wake up to a blue sky with only a few clouds. Also, the wind had eased, and it promised to be just right for the three excursions planned for the day.

Some guests visited a farm on the edge of the city that specialized in breeding Highland cows. There were many cows in the herd along with three bulls. Grace, the farmer we met, also raised a small flock of sheep and some goats. Meanwhile, another group visited a museum covering the exploits and adventures of the “Gordon’s Highlanders” regiment, beloved by Winston Churchill.

Another group went to see the Pitmedden Gardens, about 12 miles outside Aberdeen. Pitmedden Gardens is a very formal garden with parterres and lots of borders, which will soon be filled with thousands of bedding plants. There are impressive walls all around the garden, which are covered with espaliered fruit trees, which stretched for hundreds of yards. The blossom was beginning to show, promising a beautiful show. The garden is kept in tiptop condition by three fulltime gardeners, who are helped by volunteers.

Back to the ship and one last lunch before we face the sad reality of packing for home. But there was one last lecture in the Ice Lounge, given by our geologist Joe Holliday, informing us about plate tectonics and formation of the British and Irish Isles.

Rounding off this wonderful expedition was the world premiere of the guest slideshow, which is made up of photographs taken by guests and collated by Lisa Hornak, our photo instructor. And, judging by the high quality of the photographs, Lisa has done a fine job this trip.

Lastly, it fell to Captain Heidi to bring the expedition to a close, with amusing words written by a young boy on why he wanted to be a ship’s captain. Sadly, all good things must come to an end and tomorrow we must all say goodbye to Britain’s “Wild Isles.” For now.