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Hello! Thanks for visiting my blog, I am glad you are here. For the most part, I use this to comment (and sometimes ramble...) about the many things I love or perhaps am fascinated with this week. This can include quite an assortment of topics, including my propensity for reading novels at all hours of the day, writing, art, and travel, as I do have a serious case of Wanderlust.

"The World is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page." ~St. Augustine

Monday, September 12, 2011

Scotland, take 6 (and I need to buy a thesaurus...)

I think I avoid doing each next installment of my trip because it makes it that much more real that it did in fact and, and I am back home. Also, I apologize beforehand regarding the repetition of certain adjectives. I am working on this, so be a dear and bear with me on this as I grow as a writer ;-)

Here goes, day 6!

Glamis Castle, Saint Andrews, and day 1 of Edinburgh are on the plate today.

We started this day by taking a sort of internal maze to breakfast. Apparently all of the dining rooms are connected by hallways and small doors, so it was fun. I was able to acquire the smallest ever bottle of ketchup this morning as well! It was so adorable I could not bring myself to open it; I just gazed adoringly at it from across the table. Hehe.

Now, off to Glamis Castle.
Located in Angus, Scotland (which itself is noted as the birthplace of Scotland, fin fact!) it is the home of the Earl and Countess of Strathmore and Kinghorne. Since the 14th century, it has been the family home of the Lyon family, and I found out the Queen Mother spent her childhood here! We were able to see many of their rooms, preserved very well in the way they used them; everything was beautiful!
When we arrived, the gates weren't quite open yet so we had a wee walk around the grounds. It was a gorgeous day and this offered some nice pictures of the outer grounds. The castle itself was just wonderful.
However, the real star of the morning for me were the gardens.
Breathtaking. So many beautiful flowers, plants, and trees that are meticulously maintained. Just wonderful.

Now, on to the Home of Golf, Saint Andrews. A lovely little town. I am not a fan of golf per se, but I have many family members who were very envious of this leg of our trip. It was very nice to see the Old Course, stone bridge, and the many, many people enjoying an afternoon on the links.
We walked over to the shore as well, and the Scottish sea breeze and sunshine on my face was just amazing.
After lunch and shopping a bit, we took some time to sit, relax, and enjoy the afternoon.
OH! Speaking of lunch, we had the best paninis ever. Ever, really. Haggis & Bacon and Ham & Brie. YumO!

Ladies and Gents, back on the coach. Time for Edinburgh!
I was very excited to get to this part of the trip, as I had heard so many great things about this city by a friend I met whilst on my internship. Quite a bit of history in the Old Town, new posh shops and such in New Town, and a whole bunch more in between.
Look at these daises that were here to welcome us to their fine city!

The hotel we were staying at had a big Masons convention going on, so lots of men in suits (no kilts, sad!) all over the place. This being said, we were given instructions on how to get to the lobby, acquire our room keys, then escape back upstairs to change expediently before dinner. My mother and I were lucky and able to get in, through, and up rather quickly as we chose the stairs option. There was one tiny elevator that the entire group were waiting to use, so we decided to do not that. We were the first ones back out after getting all gussied up, earning the praise of Ian.

Before dinner in Leith, we went on a short twilight tour of the city seeing a few sites we would actually go to the next day; a bit of a preview if you will.
Kyla and I still hadn't been able to have dinner together yet, so we made it a point to have our 'date' this evening at our last group dinner at Prezzo.
It was right on the pier, wonderful views of the sun setting on the docked fishing boats.
What a great end to the tour.

Well, not really. This is not the end. We do have one more guided tour tomorrow morning with Richard, our Edinburgh guide. However, as far as Ian and Eddie go, this was the last hurrah with the whole group.

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