The Speyside Incident

This is what we called it amongst ourselves for the last year because the Police had asked us not to talk about the incident online (close to impossible for bloggers, we tell ya) until the perpetrator was caught, and here is our breaking news from earlier today: Ladies and Gentlemen: they’ve got ‘em! The guy confessed, and is convicted and put away for several years. Like a friend of us mentioned today “may his darker parts get so worn out, an endoscopic camera does not need any artificial lights to operate”.

Short story long, because we can hear some of you thinking “what the flying fuck happened?!” After we had a fabulous time in Speyside during the Spirit of Speyside Festival in May 2014 (here, here, here, here, here and here). Let’s just say, we had visited a couple that week. We had also added some more days (here, here and here) and on the Friday, we had our closing day at the Tomatin Distillery (here and here, you greedy puppies) and had enjoyed a fantabulouos day (because awesome just does not cover it all), we had planned to finish with a dinner outdoors with our new friends for one last time this holiday. One short stop at the house to drop our Tomatin bottles and freshen up, so we would not smell of distillery during dinner and drams.

We had received an unexpected “bonus” from our tax returns, and had decided to invest this in some unique festival bottlings and bottle your owns from almost every distillery that offers them and we had visited those two weeks. When we entered our room we almost simultaneously said to each other “why did you leave such a mess this morning?” turned around and saw the location of the boxes of whisky beneath the window, but – without the boxes of whisky. One charger of the laptops hanging in the wall sockets, drawers opened and everything turned upside down. Thinking of a practical joke from our room mates at first, we stormed into their room, saw a similar mess and left the house the way we came in calling the Police, because, well, they even took the purple shirt. The bastards…

Meanwhile our friends came “home” too (they took a detour for icecreams) and we all stayed outside while waiting for the Police to arrive. Craigellachie is not a big and crime-soaked village, and the one Police-officer came, rounded up some colleagues from neighbouring towns and villages and created a crime-scene in and around the house. They took all of our separate statements, fingerprints, pictures (of the rooms, not us), and left when they were finished – quite some time after midnight. It all felt like an episode of CSI: Craigellachie. Tired as hell, we had skipped dinner and tried to get some sleep, to get up early in the morning and get our asses to the Royal Lochnachar and Tullibardine distilleries on our way home (here). We probably could have enjoyed these visits better.

To us, after a year, the 28 lost bottles are just a number. The perpetrator must have emptied them because selling would not have done him any good with our names being on more than half of the bottles we had filled ourselves. We hope he caught liver damage from it. Our laptops and other stuff were ensured, and the insurance company did not give us any trouble, so there is that. What has hurt most, is that we lost two weeks worth of distillery photographs that were on our laptops, all pictures that were left were on our phones and a handful of pictures we had uploaded to Facebook via the pretty slow WiFi at the house. The fact that people went through our stuff just feels wrong, and we were not the only one affected in this burglary, but in the end; stuff is still just stuff.

We also like to stress that it looks like we had just bad luck and were on the wrong place at the wrong time. There is no evidence that we were targeted by the guy(s), but still a word of advice. Every bartender and taxi driver will ask you “where are you staying?” all with good intent and without any underlying ideas, but be careful of who is listening in. Your planning of the next day (like our plans with Tomatin, a good hour drive from where we were) might give an innocent looking bystander an idea, even in Craigellachie…

Thanks to all the people who helped us with advice and assistance (you know who you are) and to the great police officers that came to our call that day. Shit happens, and after a year we think back to that moment, still feeling like it was yesterday, having done, seen and experienced some amazing moments. With today’s good news, we just take a little sigh of relief, and a small dram…


2 Comments Add yours

  1. Ormiston says:

    Doesn't bring your bottles or your pictures back but glad they caught the guy.


  2. Indeed, very happy with that Ormiston! Having a lovely Tomatin tonight to that 🙂


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