A whisky tour of Islay, Scotland

Dear Ajay,
Dileep and I are just back in D.C. We have had a wonderful holiday in Scotland, and I wanted to thank you for making all the arrangements.
The route we took was gorgeous. I don't know what I was expecting, but the journey to Islay and back was in itself a pleasurable experience; Alpine with 'fjords'!!!!  And then there was Islay. I have a new respect for whiskey. What struck me was how peacefully/ serenely/ almost spiritually the liquor is made by a few people who have a passion for making it and in these little distilleries each of which overlooks a vista that is breathtaking. No wonder whiskey makes so many happy. I am now a new whiskey drinker!
Stevie knew the whiskey route really well. He knew the distilleries and the people who ran them and each visit ran smoothly almost like we were being hosted by them. But I think what Dileep and I most appreciated were the personal touches that Stevie added. He knew that I was interested in the island itself, and he drove us and drove us to all the little nooks and crannies he thought we would enjoy. Clearly, he loves the island and it comes across as he shares the island with you and then you also end up feeling passionately about it as well!  At one point, he took us to see a beach on the Atlantic Ocean. I said that I had a little tradition of dipping my toes into as many ocean waters as I could. He said that he had a tradition of his own and on that beautiful beach he whipped out glasses and some whiskey to drink on the beach. I drank my whiskey with my toes in the ocean. How cool is that!! And then he wanted us to 'Meet Peat'! So as we were driving, we stopped at the bogs, walked on them and got to meet peat, as Dileep describes, up, close and personal!!
I could go on and on, but you get the picture.
I want to say that this was a perfect holiday. Nothing went wrong and everything was wonderful. So thank you for making excellent arrangements for us. Now we are already thinking about our next one!
Vaijayanti & Dileep Wagle
June 2014
Washington D.C.

Photos courtesy Dileep Wagle