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Wednesday, February 22, 2017


In full disclosure, I stole that joke from one of my sorority sisters, Bailey, but I'll be damned if it isn't one of the funniest puns I've ever heard.

Last weekend, the squad and I hopped across the pond and went back to the UK, but this time, to Scotland! I had actually started my study abroad journey wanting to be in Edinburgh, so it was definitely a highlight getting to see that and Glasgow.

We kicked off our weekend in Scotland with a 4 AM wake up call, a friend getting locked inside her bathroom, seeing the face of God (always a treat to fly with ya, Ryanair), and everyone having printed off the wrong bus pass. Traveling is a peach, isn't it? ;)

After arriving in Glasgow around 8 AM and navigating the bus system successfully, we stopped by Where the Monkey Sleeps to grab some breakfast. One bagel + lox later and we were off to explore the riverfront and then do an escape room with Escape Glasgow. It was a great bonding experience as we all had to work together to figure the clues and puzzles out, but it was very doable and the staff would help us when we were stumped.

Next, we went to the Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum, where I got to see another Monet, as well as a Van Gogh, Renoir, Manet, Matisse, and Picasso. I wouldn't describe myself as a big art person, but since I studied these artists extensively in my history classes, it's been pretty surreal to get to see some of the pieces I memorized back in the day in person. They had a lot of exhibits that managed to suit everyone's interests, and that is no easy feat.

We concluded the day with drinks and dinner (PS - I'm of age to drink in Europe, so don't worry!), and checked into our hostel to grab some shut eye before taking on Edinburgh in the morning.

We grabbed a train from Glasgow to Edinburgh around 8 AM on Saturday morning, and within the hour we were in Edinburgh. I must admit, I love the train system in Europe. It is inexpensive, convenient, comfortable, and it's fast too. Our first stop in Edinburgh was Arthur's Seat. It was raining and windy, but we didn't realize that by the time we reached the very top, the winds would reach 70 MPH and we'd be freezing and grappling just to not get blown off the mountain (hill? ridge? Unclear exactly what it is but it was steep). I wish that I had more photos from the top, but as I was struggling just to maintain my balance (and my scarf/hat/gloves, etc), I was afraid that if the wind didn't blow me down the mountain, it'd take my camera. The brief moments I was able to look up and over the city were breathtaking though. It was certainly an adventure, but it was well worth it to be able to say we climbed Arthur's Seat.

Next, we grabbed a cab and went to a pub to get some lunch and warm up. We really just spent the rest of the wandering around and exploring the city, venturing to the Royal Mile, the City Centre, and even taking high tea to conclude the day before taking the train back to Glasgow for the night.

I must say, Scotland wasn't my favorite trip thus far. It was difficult to rally after being frozen to the bone on Arthur's seat, and in my opinion, there was much more to do in England and back in Ireland. But, it was still an opportunity to see and experience a new country and culture, and all in all, I'm glad I got to go.

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