Wednesday, June 13, 2007

13, June 2008 Glasgow Scotland

Tomorrow we leave for home. It's been a whirlwind in spite of our best intentions to have it remain restful. The last few days have been especially busy.

Today we walked through the shopping district that starts (from our perspective) on Sauchiehall street. We had originally planned to do museums and such but we're all kind of museumed out after yesterday.

Hannah bought many textile objects and a shiny new red suitcase to hold her purchases. Meg finally found a particular tartan she was looking for and I bought a diet coke so I could break a 10 pound note to get into the bathrooms at Central (train) station. We had lunch at TGIF - a sure sign of travel fatigue. We also managed to find a way to avoid the 20% grade hill back up to our hotel. That would be 18 degrees of elevation in one city block for you who are keeping score. We also found another Tardis but someone was selling coffee out of it. There was a guy painted up like and egyptian kings tomb - an interesting choice of busking art - who we gave almost all our copper to in exchange for an elegant bow.

Yesterday was a travel day but having not yet learned the lesson we went out in the morning and hit the museum (having bypassed that the day before for Falkirk and the wheel). It was a great museum and we finally got to see the Lewis Chess Men. There was shopping in a great many kilt / woolen shops and a wonderful lunch at the Tower Restaurant in the Museum of Scotland afterwards. The winning dish was the carrot and fennel(or was it caraway - I can't remember now) soup. About five we headed back to the B&B to cab with our mountain of luggage to the train station and head out from Edinburgh to Glasgow.

Getting the four of us and the 9 bags onto a crowded train rachets up the stress levels and an hour later when we debarked at Glasgow we were already tired. We were collected at the station by a bossy taxi driver (not at all encouraging like our favorite driver Derek from Alnwick) in the rain. He managed to get us and our luggage into the taxi (not that we had any choice as he wedged us and our luggage in the back of a traditional black cab. He then did the usual quiz to make sure we still knew where we came from and how long we have been in the country. His brogue was quite heavy but we were able to keep up by picking out key phrases we were able to understand. The rest we nodded said Oh Aye, and when completely unsure what he had said laughed nervously. That last part usually works regardless of the language. He was quite a character, he thought Ronald Reagan waved his hand like a poof.

A foggy taxi drive later arrived at our latest mountaintop retreat. The Old Schoolhouse Hotel. Incidentally the picture on the website for the OSH is not the hotel itself but we suspect the old school house that the hotel is located somewhat near. That mystery has not yet been solved. These Scots are certainly wily when it comes to marketing their properties. Don't get me wrong each has been a pleasant facility with accomodations that met our needs and in most cases exceeded our expectations for service but there seemed to be a little slight of hand going on at any rate.

Once we were properly settled we set out for dinner in the rain by trudging down the hill where we found an italian restaurant that appeared to be owned/operated/staffed largely by Greeks. One of them in particular had a grand time poking fun of my pronunciation of water which is apparently more like wadder. Well, we got back at them good. About half way through dinner Hannah wasn't feeling well so I walked her back to the hotel (I get triple bonus points for walking up that hill at full speed TWICE last night). When I got back both the apparent owner and his manager had very worried looks on their faces and wondered what had happened. We were very tempted to tell them it was the wadder. Other than that dinner was very good with a nice sangeovese to accompany. There was really awesome bruschetta with tomatoes and basil and then I had a penne pasta with a creamy tomato and pesto sauce while Meg and Hannah each had calzone and Terry had a pancetta pizza.

That brings you up to date from our day at Falkirk I think.

Tomorrow we leave around 10am for the airport and the flights back home. Here's fair warning for those of you who may be eager to talk to us once we get back. We leave at 12noon Glasgow time which is 5am Kansas City time. Once we get to Kansas City (assuming everything goes as planned) it will be 10 pm then another hour for each of us to get home. So that's 18 hours travelling. I for one will want to sleep VERY VERY VERY LATE. I have two Dr. appts on Friday as well so give us until Saturday to get our brains back on Central Daylight time and our brains together before expecting a recount of our adventures. We can't wait to give you the 17 hour slide show presentation with charts, maps, books, videos, and 3700 8x10 color glossy pictures with circles and arrows and a paragraph on the back of each one explaining what each one was to be used as evidence against us...... gj

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