Outlander is a popular series, captivating the hearts of viewers around the world. The ancient harbor village of Dunure, Scotland, has been the site for some of the filming of the show. I recently caught up with Janice Cook, whose sister and brother-in-law live in a converted farmer’s cottage overlooking that very harbor’s village.
Janice is from a coastal town on the west of Scotland called Girvan, overlooking the Isle of Arran and the Mull of Kintyre. She returns to her homeland frequently to check on her 86-year-old father.
She tells me on a clear day anything you see to the left of Ailsa Craig, the volcanic plug that dominates the horizon from Girvan, is Ireland and to the right is the mainland of Scotland.
Castles and golf courses are in abundance in this area of Scotland. Culzean Castle stands majestically on the coast and makes a great day out for visitors touring the castle and grounds.
Unlike Outlander and more like Downton Abbey, castles played a place in Janice’s family history as her maternal grandmother started her working life as a kitchen maid at Dalquharran Castle, near the village of Dailly. An intriguing fact about this castle, which is now in ruins is that it had a window for each day of the year.
Janice recalls living on the coast as a great place to spend a childhood, and remembering how it provided a living for her paternal grandfather, who had a commercial fishing boat.
Recently, Janice and her husband, Robert, who reside in Farragut, purchased an apartment six miles up the coast at the famous Turnberry Golf Course, the site of several major golf championships. The famous lighthouse on the golf course makes for a spectacular evening walk from their apartment.
Janice’s story shows us how history becomes our home, anchoring us to our heritage so we embrace those who came before us to guide those who come after us.
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