Day 219: First Day in Scotland

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After long flights and 3 hours of sleep, during the past 2 days, I have arrived in Scotland with my cousins. The plane had a great feature, a map that could be pulled up on the screen attached to the back of the seat in front me. Mindy, Harry and I could watch our progress as the little plane on the screen flew across the Atlantic. The feature also gave updates on distance traveled and estimated time of arrival.

I tried to sleep but it was impossible. In between watching a couple of movies I’d check our progress. As the little plane symbol moved closer and closer to its destination I got more and more excited. The sun that had just set a few hours before greeted us again as we flew east. Harry opened the window shades and we caught glimpses of Ireland below us. At last Scotland came into view with her coastline and fields and plentiful bodies of water. She called to me so strongly.

We stepped out of the airport and into the crisp morning air. It was about 8:30 Glasgow time although to our weary bodies it felt like 2:30 am. The sun was shining and I fell in love immediately.

While waiting for our room to be ready at Hotel Indigo we walked around the area, marveling at the mix of new, very modern architecture and ancient stone buildings with statues and imposing facades.

Our lack of sleep began to wear on us. We gratefully entered our room, and once we learned to put the room key into the appropriate slot so that the lights worked, we gave in and slept for a short time. The Hotel Indigo is charming and perfect for our needs.

After restorative naps and showers we were back out exploring Glasgow. The people here are friendly and helpful, especially to visitors who don’t know yet what they are doing! We found a variety of shops and restaurants in our area. The Glasgow Kilt Company caught our eye and we made our first purchases there. The friendly proprietor suggested we visit The Horseshoe Pub, just around the corner, for an authentic Scottish experience and to soak up atmosphere. That’s exactly what we were looking for!

We had a great meal of fish & chips and a glass of Guinness. We chatted with more friendly locals and did, indeed, soak up charm and ambience.

It was a wonderful first day in Scotland. It’s going to be an early night for us as we catch up on sleep however tomorrow is another day to explore further out in this fascinating city.

Last night as I watched the plane on the screen, arcing over the Atlantic, I thought of Samwise Gamgee from Fellowship of the Rings. At the edge of the shire he paused, telling Frodo “If I take one more step, I’ll be the farthest away from home I’ve ever been.” Watching the plane near Scotland I realized how far from home I was. And yet how near to my great adventure I was as well. Like Sam, I took that next step, at least, in my heart and mind while on that plane. And today, I stepped on Scottish soil. The adventure continues!

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