My Enthralling Story of Scottish Wonder...Part 2

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

When I last left you, we were at Smithies pub, partaking in an epic battle against the two old men who had poked fun of Maria being from Canada.  And who won the battle, you may ask?

Nobody.  For that night changed all nights, you see.  'Twas a great fire caused by a swinging left swung right into ye olde candle and lit the curtains ABLAZE with a great glory!  Up, up!  went the flames, and the screams, and the smoke and the TERROR.  OH, THE TERROR.  "Whyyyyyyyy" wailed the woman in the corner, and I said "Nancy Kerrigan what are you doing here?"  We all ran coughing and sputtering into the streets, gasping and allowing the fresh night air to fill our lungs - we gulped the air as if it were the last Bud Light on earth.  The brawl continued.   On and on it went until the hour struck 2am, when Maria and I were finally rescued by a bronzed man riding atop a unicorn (Finnick from The Hunger Games).  He swept us up with one efficient motion and flung us 30 feet into the air straight through our open window where we landed softly towards our peaceful slumber and WHAT AM I TALKING ABOUT

DAY 6:
  • Urgent shopping was needed.  What's the first thing you do when you're in a brand new city?  You emerge bleary eyed from wherever you're staying, like those various small children on Christmas morning who really need to get back to bed it's only 6:00am for PETE'S sake, then swiftly enter the nearest store that looks foreign and provides you with items that certainly can't be purchased in Canada, and therefore must certainly be better.
  • That actually means that we wandered up to Princes street while admiring the old buildings all around us, the cars going the wrong way, the babies pushing elderly people in strollers, it was all new and exciting.  Princes street is like the Queen street of Toronto, filled with chain stores you pretend to be too cool for but find yourself repeatedly going to anyway.  Unless you're like me, and you lusted for chain stores from another WORLD (Scotland).  Have you ever been in Primark?  I have, now.  And it changed my life.  It changed it for the better, as I have 36 t-shirts to show for it.  Do you have 36 t-shirts?  Even if you do, they weren't as cheap as mine!   If they were, my bad.
  • We became desperately hungry at one point and went to the first place we saw that was certainly authentic Scottish cuisine:  The Filling Station.  I think it's an American chain?  I really can't be sure.  All I know is that it does what the name promises: fills you.  With food.  
  • I received a text message from a friend who I shall call "Grarnt".  Grarnt once had a tie of great joy, which he lost at the Canadian Comedy Awards and Festival during a choreographed line dance, probably back in 2005.   Grarnt had politely asked me to locate this tie in Scotland, and I was like "sure no problem!"  Until it became evident that such ties were no longer sold in great quantities, or any quantity at all.  I had gone inside approximately 47 tourist shops, and had yet to see the tie Grarnt longed for.  Sensing my frustration (not really though, I kind of love repetitive souvenir shops), Maria had suggested we simply ask the sales associate of the particular store we were in.  Me being a wretched cow, said "how would SHE know what RANDOM store in Scotland sells these ties?  You think she knows the inventory of every souvenir store in SCOTLAND!" etc. etc.  1.5 minutes later we were directed around a pillar behind the cash, where the tie I was looking for was hanging from the wall.  It was the last one in Scotland.  Sorry, Maria.  
  • I'm pretty sure this is the day we went to Edinburgh castle, which was decent.   We got to stare at swords that we confirmed (with the guide) had once been covered in blood and guts (this was important info, FYI).  Afterwards we wandered over to where a certain little statue was that I wanted to see:
Greyfriars Bobby, more loyal than that grey hair that constantly appears by your right temple.  Oh, just me?

Pure swords

  • We ate at a place across the street that had grey paint and looked supertrendy!, called Cross and Corner.  We ate giant hamburgers and our eyes looked particularly bulgy after.  I would like to return there.
Day 7:
  • A new day!  On this particular day I had decided we needed to embark on a journey to Dunfermline, the town where my grandmother grew up and a town that has a cathedral and an abbey and some random soccer stadium Maria wanted to look at.  
  • An hour train ride later, and we were there.  Because that's how trains work....
  • We went to the soccer stadium first, passing by Carnegie Hall - the Scottish one.  Maria (being Maria) had contacted whoever from the stadium and arranged to be let in to poke around.  After staring at the field for two minutes, we left.  Enthralling, I know.  

This street was very pretty in person.  In picture form?  You decide.  You decide NOTHING because I said it was pretty!
  • We continued on our journey towards my Grandmother's old house, which we found quite easily.  We stared at it some, took some pictures, stared some more, wandered a bit, etc.

This street: cooler than McCowan road since the year 1312.
  • We went to some terrifying mall (by terrifying, I mean filled with hot sweaty people).  Again, it was hot.  Very hot!  And sunny, despite what these pictures may show you.  After hastily exiting the mall, we went to check out another building with family history, but that's none of your business.
  • We checked out Dunfermline Abbey and Cathedral, which were pretty cool.  Here are some pics for evidence:

Old stuff = cool stuff

Cool walls = cool walls
  • We went home (back to Edinburgh) and while walking up the ramp coming out of Waverley station, we encountered a woman who had been walking ahead, but had decided to abruptly stop in the centre of this (narrow) path to drag things out of her shopping bag and stare at them.  Seeing that we were approaching her, she squawked "you can say 'excuse me', but I'm not a gonna move!"  In a very aggressive manner.  I said "ok" and walked by her.  
  • After some more wandering, we ate again at the Roamin' nose and then watched more soccer at Smithies, minus the brawl on this particular evening.
  • You'll notice there haven't been any fails-of-the-day, because Edinburgh brings out the inner cool person in EVERYONE and you CAN'T EVER FAIL!!!
DAY 8:
  • Guess what....more wandering!  Back to the Royal Mile we went.  On the way there, we were walking by a group of young lads who all had their hands in their pockets.  An older man saw them and barked "don't let the moths get out of your pockets!"  I found that extremely funny at the time, tbqh.  
Lisa Fail-of-the-Day:  Not really a fail, not even a cool story - this is completely meaningless.  I dragged Maria all the way down the Royal Mile to check out the Palace of Holyroodhouse, but the gate was closed and he didn't want to pay the entry fee.  We grasped the rods of the giant fence and I spoke while eating and sprayed the gate with shortbread, also I spilled coffee all over my white chucks.  Well, that's it.
  • We walked past a tattoo shop, stopped walking, turned around, peered inside and upon seeing that it looked clean and filled with young trendy Scottish people, I made an appointment to get an incredibly basic tattoo.
  • By the way, at this point I was getting very tired of whisky and whisky shops.  There are SO MANY.  And they are all FILLED WITH WHISKY!  I couldn't take it anymore!  In one shop I became so desperate that I began flinging bottles off the shelves, into the cobblestone streets and the sprays of whisky were so great that even the pigeons became drunk.  It was a nightmare!
  • Made my thirteenth trip to Primark
  • We "Filled" ourselves again
  • That evening we ate at The Other Place.  It's called The Other Place.  I mean it's also another place, but you call it The Other Place.  It was my favourite place, partially due to the comfy chairs that allow you to unbutton your pants for greater stomach room.  They had high chair arms that conceal your great stomach.  I had Black Isle Organic beer and alot of fish and chips.  Oh god I'm hungry just thinking about it.  Oh god I've eaten my keyboard.  Oh god what am I typing with?
  • We went for a lengthy walk back up around the castle, trying to take some emo-shots:

"Leave me alone." Said the castle.  "You're a castle, you can't move - nevermind be left alone at any point in your existence.." said the crazy person talking to a castle.

DAY 9:
  • On this day we decided to take a trip to St Andrews, the home of golf.  As an incredibly huge golf fan myself, I thought this was a great idea and I couldn't wait to see the 
  • I'm just kidding, I don't like golf but I thought it would be cool and I really wanted to play mini-putt.
  • It's an hour long train ride to St Andrews from Edinburgh, but the trains in Scotland are pretty roomy and I mean that's cool.  Did we play mini-putt? Yes, we did.  Was it on the Himalayas course that I had intended to play on?  No.  Did playing mini-putt still fill me with rage like every other time I play mini-putt (or go bowling)? Yes.  Was it great?  Yes.   It was also very hot, again.  Sunny and hot.  Hot and sunny.  
  • The gift shops are expensive.  The town is ok, nothing much to do.  There was a cool cathedral to look at, but I'm honestly getting bored just writing this.  I sound rude, and maybe on the next street over was the greatest experience of my life?  I'll never know, will I.
  • On the train home an old man had Dr Dre Ringtone, which I found interesting.
  • There were two horrendously loud children on the train as well - one of whom I eventually "shushed"....I got my payback when his/her little brother walked up to me later and stared at me quietly for a solid two minutes with his weird blue Harry Potter glasses, quite frankly making me nervous.  He got off the train a stop before Edinburgh, and then somehow miraculously appeared at my side IN Edinburgh about three minutes after I got off there.  Explain this to me?
  • We did more wandering and ate at The Other Place again.  Not the other place, The Other Place.  We were there for three hours, and alot of beer was consumed.  Alot.  
The next three days were filled with more wandering.  Maria fell ill on Day 10 and proceeded to have feverish symptoms for those three days. We returned to The Other Place and Cross & Corner again, because we are creatures of habit and I simply don't see anything wrong with that.  Ok!?    I went to get my tattoo from a lad who knew of Kensington Market (in Toronto), and went on a rather tame ghost tour in an underground vault.  The tour guide dude was a good storyteller, but standing around in three dark rooms is only scary for about 5 minutes.

Halt.  Who ghost there?

I returned to the Palace of Holyroodhouse, where I DID pay admission and I DID take the historical tour because that day the gate was open - no shortbread was sprayed, and instead I wandered through the vast yard and accepted the little ear-thinger that allows you to move around in peace while listening to the historical anecdotes and some other stuff.  These leave you in peace until you're trying to stare at a crown in a case and a child abruptly shrieks behind you, scaring the crap out of you and making you think the palace is in fact haunted by a monster...but then you turn around and nope it's just a regular kid.

I actually liked that tour, fyi.  They do not allow pictures inside, but I was able to capture some grass outside:

Stunning.  The grass, is?  It stuns.

I like old stuff.

I've decided not to share anymore pictures, because it will spoil your upcoming trip to Scotland.  The one you haven't booked yet, but you will.  Oh yes, you will.

Will you?  You should.  I wish you would.  Actually don't, because then Primark will be crowded.  And I know the command I have over my vast audience, so I know this message will keep Primark crowds at bay.  Look at all the comments below!  Yeah, that's right.

Ok that's all I'm willing to share about my trip to Scotland (also because that's actually pretty much it).
-You should go to Scotland.
-I'm going to go back to Scotland.

Peace, love and sunshine!*
xoxo - Lisa

*I'm going to start ending my blogs by ensuring I continue to never say anything like that ever again

My Enthralling Story of Scottish Wonder...Part 1

Thursday, July 3, 2014

I wrote about going to Scotland previously-when I outlined my extensive itinerary below-but then it actually happened, and now I'm back in Canada, back to the 'ol igloo that I had to get to from the airport by foot since my canoe broke down.   I would like to share my semi-point-form experiences from this journey.  This probably means I'll do a super lazy job and bore you to tears by the third paragraph, but that's cool.

Our journey (it wasn't just me hanging out alone - let's call my associate "Maria" to preserve their identity since this is a public blog that everyone in the world reads) began at approximately 4:00pm on a Saturday in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

Oh wait - let me first mention that a few weeks back, while on the phone PAYING (sigh!!) to choose the seats on our Air Transat flight, they convinced me with very minimal effort (because I heard the word 'priority' and wanted to feel super special), to upgrade our seats to Option Plus.  Not the physical seats, but their essence, really.

Option Plus means the following (I was not paid by Air Transat to write this, but should be tbh):
-you get priority check-in at the airport.  This was amazing, considering the Air Transat line wrapped around about 8 times and we were able to walk by everyone and check-in almost immediately. Heyyyyy
-you get to check an extra bag/you get extra baggage weight.  If you are planning on bringing your bowling ball to roll up and down the highlands, this is perfect.
-you get priority boarding (after the Club Class people and the elderly/disabled).  So, you get to board before everyone else.  This part I was just ok with, since boarding first means sitting longer.
-they keep offering/handing you booze on the plane, and you get a special snack during a non-snack time!  Other people saw our snacks and asked if they could have one too?  NO, said the Flight Attendant.  They are for OPTION PLUS customers ONLY (she actually did say it that harshly to one person).
-you get a comfort kit.  This includes a blankie (person behind me was also harshly denied one), an eye-mask, earplugs, earphones, and an inflatable neck pillow.
-you get a firm handshake and then a salute, while exiting the aircraft.
-that last one isn't true, but it should be.  I thought it was worth the extra money,  if only for the line bypass alone.

After the overnight flight, we arrived in Glasgow at about 8:00am their time.  I decided not to bother sleeping, since it seemed like a waste of time and I figured I'd fall asleep faster when I went to bed that night (true and cool story).  Luckily the CitizenM Glasgow allows very early check-ins, at a small fee.  YOUR SOUL!!!!

I just spent a few seconds looking for the pound sign on my keyboard just now, and then felt pretty stupid afterwards because I remembered that character map exists,  for such useful symbols as the following:

£  <--the one I needed
Ψ <-- a pitchfork
ώ <--boobs with a food crumb on top
Ử <--a man's nose with a food crumb on top
♫ <--someone's behind-the-ear tattoo

And so on and so forth.

So in Glasgow we were, in the CitizenM hotel which is really quite strange.  All the rooms look the same, with one giant bed at the far side of the room, an odd shower taking over half the room, and then a sink just stuck to the other wall.  I had a picture, but now I can't find it so here is a picture I stole from their website:

You know you want to enclose yourself in this purple tube of joy

Why am I describing the shower in the hotel room?  Who cares?  Why don't I tell you what I ate there for breakfast?  Well I will tell you...I ATE CROISSANTS.  Three days in a row.  Maria had bacon and 45 pieces of bread and what else, and here I was sitting there eating croissants.  I will have you know, that they were the greatest croissants that I've ever had the pleasure of spraying all over my pants.  The crumbs, I mean. You know how croissants are!  LET ME TALK ABOUT CROISSANTS FOREVER

To get this moving along, here is my condensed, day-to-day breakdown of the happenings on my trip.


DAY 1:
  • We wandered around shopping on Sauchiehall and Buchanan Streets, primarily.  I saw a UK Glamour Magazine for the very first time while IN the UK!  I like UK Glamour.  I like it alot.  It's a really convenient size, it has many words inside and in the UK it comes with gifts.  All their magazines come with gifts.  What is this magical land of giftish magazines? 
  • I went to my first Primark store.  How do you describe Primark?  It's like a cheaper H&M with a greater selection of cheap things?  Speaking of H&M, they have a housewares department in the UK.  What's your problem, Canada?  I didn't even look in that department, but the fact that it's even an option there and not here is enough for me to huff 'n puff about it for at least 2 minutes.
  • It rained.  Before I left, everyone told me it would rain and be cold.  I was like 'pssh fine whatever' and the day we got there, it was sunny but then promptly rained when it was shopping time.  But then it was sunny. But then it rained.  Then it was sunny again.  The weather you see, is as indecisive as my associate Maria and hey, but it also doesn't matter because your surroundings are SUPERCOOL.
  • We wandered to this bar called the Horse Shoe, which we were advised is oldest bar in Glasgow.  Should we believe the shop-girl that told us that?  Let's do a quick Google.  brb.  Hmm well, so far all I've seen is that it has the LONGEST bar in Europe.  The physical length of the bar is really long.  So I really don't know what to think now...who can I believe if I can't believe the shop-girl?  I don't even remember what shop she was in.  Wait a minute, she was in Cath Kidtson - the store of many flowers on bags and towels.  Hmm.
  • After more wandering we ate on the patio of some place called Di Maggio's.  By 'ate' I mean shoved entire pizzas into our open faces.  I'm pretty sure after that we were in straight up comas in our strange hotel room, because I don't even remember anything after that.  I'm happy with how this post is going, so far. Really informative.
DAY 2:
  • Day two started like any other day, looking at the rain outside while eating a croissant.  We were planning on eventually making our way to Ibrox stadium, home of the Glasgow Rangers Football Club.  Apparently somebody would maybe(?) be there to let us in to look around.  This was fine, until Maria decided to check his emails, and then made a shocking discovery that would alter the course of our day forever - Ibrox Stadium had emailed us stating that we were an hour and a half late for our tour.  "What tour?" we both said.  Much confusion ensued, and I insisted that Maria check his email conversation with the woman from Ibrox.  "She never said anything about a tour!", he insisted.  Until he saw the email that stated yes, we were getting a tour.  That we were almost two hours late for.  
  • Oop.
  • Off we went for our first ride in the extensive Glasgow Subway system.
Massive/confusing/overwhelming tbqh
  • Tall people like me have to bend down to get in this subway, and it reminds me of the Scarborough RT for some reason.   We eventually arrived at Ibrox, both of us too terrified to go inside (we had visions of being yelled at or banished forever).  Instead we found a nice elderly man waiting for us, and he politely asked if we'd gotten lost/forgotten the time, etc. And I had to apologize profusely.  I'm pretty sure if this were in anywhere else, he would have left an hour earlier and not waited for our sorry butts.  He then had the decency to take us on a private tour of the stadium.  
Ranger's Trophy Room: room of many trophies
  • We then moved outside to the official Rangers Megastore, where we spent so much time that a storm system moved in and a massive downpour began outside (our shopping affected the weather ok). They even gave us a bag of free stuff.  What kind of nice place is this, that rewards punks from Toronto who show up two hours late?!  What kind of flawfree establishment is this?!
  • After that, we took the subway a couple of stops over to Hillhead, as I wanted to see the Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum, and Mackintosh House. 
Lisa Fail-of-the-Day:  Occured earlier in the day when I was looking up the opening times of the above-mentioned places. Failed to notice they are only closed on Mondays.  Day 2 was, of course, a Monday.  
  • It was a nice area of Glasgow, so we did what anyone else would do after such an extreme fail - walked into the nearest bar.  By the way, I figured that in the UK they call everything 'pubs'.  But they kept saying 'bar' in Scotland, and I was flabbergasted.  I felt like a fool.  A FOOL.  The bar was called Tennents Pub (not bar, pub...lolwut), and inside I had my first Tennents beer.  I think it's like the Coors Light of Scotland?  Honestly I just made that up, I'm sorry if I insulted Tennants beer.  I'm so sorry.  My ignorance is showing.  Beergnorance.
  • That evening we ate at Fratelli Sarti ( because of course we would go to an Italian restaurant while in Scotland.  I don't even remember which of the three Glasgow locations we were at, I believe the one on Renfield.  It was good, I had much wine.  
  • I hope you're on the edge of your seat still and that you're still with me - because it's only going downhill from here.
  • This was our second and last night in Glasgow, we would have liked to see more and we hope to return next year.
Bye bye Glasgow


DAY 3:
  • We were due to be retrieved by our Timberbush Tours bus at 10:15am.  Yes, you can get to Skye on your own, but I would much rather have not attempted to drive myself on a)the wrong side of the road b)on narrow highways in the highlands where you drive 2cm away from giant trucks and c)on the sides of tall cliffs where you're certain you may topple off to your very own death-by-rental-car-explosion
  • Being a complete and total spazz at times (despite the fact that I have a "Go With the Flow" tattoo), I couldn't find the bus anywhere...I only saw a couple other confused looking people, and was sure the bus was leaving without us.  After throwing around some swear words and stomping around the block five times and acting like a giant child, the bus randomly showed up and all was well (sorry, Maria).  
  • Our first stop was at Loch Lomond, and it was yes, raining. MORE RAIN (please see below if you feel utterly helpless at the notion).  It was a nice little town with a nice lake (loch) to stare at.  
"Follow me, I will show you the way to your destiny"
Lisa Fail-of-the-Day:  I stopped in a gift shop and bought some super kewl postcards.  In my usual logical fashion, I stored them in my armpit and then took some pictures of walls and flowers.  Taking pictures generally requires you raise your arm in order to actually use the camera, and needless to say, several minutes later I realised my postcards were missing.  I ran back (quite dramatically) in the pouring rain and the postcards were gone.  Never to be seen again.  /csb
  • We drove and drove.  The Timberbush Tour buses are pretty small, which is good if you don't want to travel around for three days with 40 other people.  We drove by Ben Nevis, through the Highlands, and stopped at Glencoe.  It was raining most of the morning, until we got to Glencoe.  That's when the clouds parted, and the sun shone through gracefully upon us.  True and cool!
  • We stopped for lunch in Fort William, which was kind of a useless town, at least from what I saw.  There was a gift shop though, so I was happy as I bought many keychains and trinkets.  
  • After some other stops I forget we eventually arrived in Portree in the early evening, which is a small place saturated with B&Bs.  We ate at the Bosville hotel and I drank much St Mungos beer.  I like St Mungos.  I ate a cow sandwiched between two pieces of bread and question my existence in this world.  I ran to the sea and wrote deep poetry about my experience and my new-found enlightenment that came in the form of a hamburger.
  • At 10:45pm it's still light out in Scotland, which was a bit odd yet also cool.  They air many Gaelic television shows on their stations, which was interesting/I had no idea what they were saying.
DAY 4:
  • Our Skye trip continued - the cute lady that owned the B&B made us breakfast.  That's why it's called a Bed & Breakfast, you know.  I bet you didn't know that.  They have beds inside as well as breakfasts.  Sometimes you can have breakfast on your bed, but that's called breakfast in bed.  DOn't get them mixed up.  You learn something every day with my blog!
Lisa Fail-of-the-Day: We stopped outside/near the Sligachan hotel in the Cuillins for a photo-op.  I wore chucks on this trip, which is really the ideal footwear to go traipsing around hills and rocks and generally slippery things.  So of course I got out of the bus and promptly slid down an entire hill on my butt.  When things like that happen, I generally try to joke with whoever's nearby that potential saw the oops, and then get a smile out of them (this is usually met with blank stares, and this case was no exception).  Even Maria didn't find it amusing as he was already about 50 feet away so it looked like I slid down a 2 foot bump on the ground.

Taken when I was not sliding down a hill.

  • We stopped at a nice beach in Carbost

The hills were calling his name, thought Maria.  They were in fact saying nothing at all.
  • Maria had his heart set on visiting the Talisker Distillery, the only Distillery on Skye.  The tour wasn't really planning on stopping there this time (the Timberbush tours seem to have specific stopping points, but the schedule is up to their own interpretation), but what Maria wants Maria gets.  So after bringing it up to the driver about six times, the whole group was asked if they wanted to go and half actually did.  That worked out, and the rest of us went to the Fairy Pools. 
Off in the distance is that unattainable mountain mentioned below.  One day I will rise above that mountain and poke it in the ear.
  • I'm kind of anti-social/awkward in group situations with strangers, so I ran off by myself in my slippery chucks and headed off towards that mountain pictured up there.  You know when big things look really close yet are really far away?  You know, big things?  That are far away?  Well this big mountain thing was far away and looked just as far away as it was, yet I figured I could get there and back in our allotted hour and a half time frame. I WAS WRONG LOL.  I walked and walked, over crevices and cracks and stones and hills up and down and all around, and yet I still didn't reach that mountain. At one point, there was a stream that you could only cross by walking over about 5 terribly placed, slippery rocks. I did see one man fail at his mission and wind up with soaking wet feet.  I stood there for about 10 minutes unsure of what to do (there were no other options, I had explored for a bit and come to the conclusion that only an epic journey over the fiery fortress of rock would be the way this story ended) when the tour guide came by and helped me.  csb.  Hey, it was kind of scary!
Looks easy in this pic, no?  Well nooo!
  • The driver played alot of music on the bus, including this catchy song: 
  • We went back to Portree for lunch, and it's a good thing we did because we went back to the B&B and as I pulled out the keys to unlock the door, I realised I was holding strange, unfamiliar keys.  I had a hunch that was confirmed moments later, when the owner came out of the kitchen looking all worried asking if I had her keys.  The poor lady had been without her keys the entire first half of the day :(  I'm certain this was Maria's doing, but he claimed innocence (until the next day when he said it was probably his doing).
  • Continuing along on our journey, we stopped to stare at the Old Man of Storr from afar, as well as stopping to see Kilt Rock.  There is a fence to protect humans from falling off the high, high cliff - and of course a tourist thought that it would be hilarious to climb over the fence to show everyone how zany and daring he is and WOULDN'T THIS MAKE A GREAT FACEBOOK PROFILE PIC?  Needless to say, he fell to his death moments later and it put a rather big damper on our trip.  
Old Man of Storr just chilling out, relaxing, missing the old woman, etc. etc.
  • Ok he didn't really fall to his death, but he did have problems getting back over the fence as the crotch of his pants kept getting caught.  He looked very distressed and the rest of us found it amusing (HEY - don't climb over safety fences!).  At one point he was stuck on the fence with all his weight on said crotch, and I thought he was going to start crying.
Kilt Rock looking more beautiful than your wife.
  • We stopped by a place near (in?) the Quairaing that apparently has a dinosaur footprint in the sand, but the tide was too high for us to stare at it in amazement.  
  • Let me add that up to this point we had not been attacked by any midges whatsoever.  I was very pleased by this, as midges are known as "the horrendous biting monstrous teeny tiny creatures of hell of Scotland of go awayyyyy", so I had brought along bug spray and was ready for battle.  The battle never happened....or did it?
  • We went to see some black houses (old stuff is cool) and over there yonder I could see Flora McDonald's grave.  What I did not know, was that Alexander McQueen was also buried in that graveyard (Kilmuir).  We visited them both.
  • After that we went to my favourite place, the Fairy Glen (Castles).  We all frolicked around for an hour, as it was a very pretty place filled with sheep, green hills, strange rock formations on the ground and lots of rocky things to climb.  Speaking of climbing, I was following everyone happily up a hill pictured below, as the path was flanked on one side by a steep drop, but the other side had a nice hill to hang on to if need be.  Everything was fine until that hill just decided to go home, and the path was just hanging there in open air and AHH SOOOO SCARED.  
Where the girl in the white hoodie is, is where I realised I could not continue on my quest to that THING.
  • So I fell over onto the nearest perch I could find where I began to have a mini-freakout, while the others (including women in heeled boots!) continued up the terror-path onto a super-high thing (I don't even know what to call it).  Eventually I made my way very slowly back down the terror-path back onto flat ground, where I frolicked some more like an overgrown child (but with the same scraggly hair).
Further-away view of that THING.
Just outside this frame is an actual fairy taking a selfie.
  • We listened to Rod Stewart on the bus
  • That night we at the Isles Pub on this, our last night in Portree

DAY 5:
  • We left Skye :(  If you ever go to Scotland (you should), you must go to Skye (you must).  Let's get srs rn.  If you like beautiful scenery, feeling alive, running around without a care in the world, sheep, etc. then you should go to Skye.  /End of srs moment.  
  • We stopped at Eilean Donan castle, which was ok.  I liked the giftshop better (what is wrong with me?).  The castle had cute displays inside but when I enter an establishment I really want to be able to wander around the entire place without any restrictions (also known as trespassing).  
  • We stopped to see some highland coos in Invermoriston.  Cows.  Cute cows with big bangs and painful horns.  We fed them carrots, one turned around and nearly shat in our faces.  One almost knocked my entire arm off. True story!    
This is not the one that sprayed feces in our general direction.
  • Still no rain.  
  • Stopped at Fort Augustus, ie. where Loch Ness is.  Saw no Nessy, so bought Nessy souvenirs instead.  Nessy is probably watching Breaking Bad 300 feet below the surface, tbh.  
  • Listened to Stairway to Heaven in the bus, everyone feeling emo and deep.
  • Stopped at a waterfall to take some more super cool pics, and that's when it happened...MIDGES ATTACK!!!  They left me alone (I think I taste bad), but attacked others, including Maria. They chased us back to our bus, but not before we stopped for a quick group pic:
Check us out!  Photo cred to the lady in the middle. I mean, her camera.
  • We stopped in Pitlochry, and although many things were closed, what a pretty town it was!  I'd like to return there sometime and enter it's many treat shops and eat all the treats in those treat shops and become a happy old woman who lives in Pitlochry and knits cosies and cross-stitches and other things of that nature.
  • Alas, after that long journey we finally arrived at our next destination.....

  • I had to get our rental apartment keys from a lady in a bistro known as the Roamin' Nose.  We stopped quickly to admire the apartment (it was very nice) before running back to the restaurant.  I love that restaurant.   I had some Barney's beer there.  I would like more Barney's beer.
  • I went on my very first trip to Tesco.  Yes, it's a supermarket.  Yes, I got excited over going to a supermarket.   Hey, I'd only heard about it via songs (hi Lily Allen) or random British television shows.  Or Glamour UK.  I was as excited to go to Tesco as I was to go to Primark.  
  • We went across the street to a pub called Smithies, where we watched the beginning of the World Cup.  I don't even remember what game it was.  Does it matter?  I was in a bar in Scotland drinking more (Tennants), I don't care what I was watching.
  • Did you know that some places in Scotland allow dogs?  I mean inside their eateries?  Bistros?  I don't know the full extent of it, but there were dogs inside places I was eating.  That's my kind of place!  As long as the dog hair stays on the dog.
  • A couple of old-men regulars made fun of Maria (he was wearing a Canada soccer hat), making exclamations about Canada "what team do they even have anyway!?" and other things of that nature.  Maria was a bit saddened after that, which made me want to attack in defense!  Actually we just had more beer and then went to sleep and were pretty content.

I think that's enough for today.....
.....part 2 of this epic journey to follow (please don't hold your breath).

Nostalgia Industrial Rock Gem #1

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Oh yas let me share with you this gem from the year 1997.

Home, by Econoline Crush aka a rock gem that 14-15 year old me was SUPER INTO.

Serving up strobe lights and patatatatatatatatatatatatatatata drums better than your faves.

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