it was may 2012, just over four years ago now, and we were getting ready to plunk down the money for a one way plane ticket to adventure. we were going to be flying out of toronto, simply because it was close enough to michigan to drive to and we both wanted to see more of eastern canada. destination? the place that was cheapest to fly to from there.
i remember when alex told me, “so, it really looks like it’s going to be glasgow.” glasgow? scotland? i didn’t know much about scotland at the time, but those tickets were a bargain ($486 each from airtransat, if i recall), so we went to the website to book. does anyone else feel incredibly nervous booking plane tickets for such a big journey? i feel nervous just booking plane tickets for any journey, let alone a one way ticket when we didn’t know when we’d return! it also meant an official end-date on our time in seattle. so many feels.
not only was glasgow just so undeniably cool, but it seemed as if the country got better with every passing day we spent in it, especially after traveling up the west coast for some much needed unplugging and slow travel, spending almost seven weeks in the country.
we tried (icky, orange) irn bru, ate alllthemeatallthebutter, found our favorite UK tv shows. we searched for and explored famous caves (like bonnie prince charlie’s cave that he actually hid out in in the 18th century!), learned all about isle-life, and the ridiculous scottish weather patterns that rain every hour on the hour.
we ate well, snuggled in our cozy cottages and bedrooms, and learned how serious the scots take tea time – it’s practically a RELIGION. tea cakes, oat cakes, delicious buttery biscuits. we discovered the most pristine, fantastic beaches where there wasn’t another soul. the viking and celtic heritage, the whisky pilgrimages. (oh, the whisky! take me back)
sheep, sheep, and more sheep. listening to all the biffy clyro (and coining the phrase, if the weather’s iffy, reach for some biffy.) serving tea and coffee to hundreds of parishioners at a church banquet. the kind, friendly, generous people. taking the dogs up the hill on a walk, cautiously stepping around the humongous black angus bulls. visiting a sheep auction, ordering an egg roll and asking the lass at the counter what exactly is in an egg roll. (hint: it’s got an egg. in a roll.)
drinking cocktails and snacking on olives in the sitting room of a man named john smith. singing with a choir in the crypt of the rosslyn chapel (life high point). going out fishing for mackerel in the loch. hoovering, finding where the courgette is in the garden on the terrace, to put my rubbish in the wheelie bin.
if it hadn’t had been for those cheapo tickets, i wouldn’t have discovered scotland or have come to love; to have been changed so much by this wondrous place that started the adventure chronicled in this here blog. (what are the odds, right? ohhh, life.)
every september that rolls around, i go into this major scotland nostalgia-overload where i listen to cat stevens on repeat and dream of the lochs and hills. i can’t wait to go back and have more adventures, meet new friends, see old ones, and make more memories.
have you been to scotland? what is your favorite scotland memory?