Wednesday, July 7, 2010

So Long, Scotland

By Claire and Chuck

Coming to you direct from Internet@Sea on our way to Belfast, Northern Ireland--some thoughts about our time in Scotland:

Fewer roads, easier driving.

Classic four-seasons-in-one-day weather.

More things to see than we ever imagined.

Friendly people, charming accents, most of which we could understand.

Beautiful and interesting architecture.

Mackintosh design over door at Glasgow School of Art

Building in Edinburgh

Campgrounds are everywhere.

Green, green and more green, in many varying shades.

Cuillin Mountains

The scenery is ever changing and gorgeous.

The history is tragic, violent and vivid. Reading the Outlander series by Diana Gabaldon peaked our interest in this fascinating country.

Beautiful flowers and thistles, the Scottish national emblem.

Frustrating internet access but that seems to be the British way--very surprising to us.

On which platform will we find our train from Glasgow?

Men in Kilts are more common outside of the cities and many shops sell and rent complete, formal Scottish outfits.

The very long days were a delight.

Favorite encounter:

We were stopped at a street corner trying to find our campground. A car was behind us, which we waved on. He pulled up beside us, rolled down his window, asking if we needed help. Casually getting out of his car, he commented, "Lovely day!" then sauntered over as if he had all the time in the world. Asked us where we were from, telling us he had golfed his way from San Francisco to Vancouver. He then carefully instructed us turn by turn, repeating it and making sure we understood. This was so at odds with the impatience we are used to at home (especially us).

Favorite road signs:

Traffic Approaching In Middle Of Road!
Haste Ye Back!

Bottom line: Scotland is an easy country to visit. We loved it. Chuck's only regret was not trying the deep fried Mars bar. I enjoyed being called M'Dearie. Add it to your bucket list.

For that is the mark of the Scots of all classes:
that he stands in an attitude towards the past
unthinkable to Englishmen, and remembers and
cherishes the memory of his forebears, good or
bad; and there burns alive in him a sense of identity
with the dead even to the twentieth generation.
~ Robert Louis Stevenson


Pat in Santa Cruz said...

I love when you do these wrapups! I really enjoyed Scotland. I could almost hear the wonderful Scottish accents. I liked your description of being in Homer and having your "wee dram" every nite. Thanks for transporting me through Outlander country -- it was wonderful.
Love, Pat

Chuck and Claire said...

Being here really brought Outlander to life for both of us. We talked about it all the time. I only wish you could have joined us.