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  • Writer's picturemaggiehsmith07

Haste Ye Back


As Andrea and I began entering the port in Scotland, we stood outside on the deck of the ferry where a passerby observed that it “smelled like barn.” Which was true. I squinted at the white shapes dotting the hillside and asked, “Are those sheep?” Andrea used the zoom on our camera, confirmed that they were and snapped a few pics before we headed back inside. While on the bus to Edinburgh, we were told that Scotland is home to 12 million sheep. I think we passed at least 1 million sheep with many babies. So cute! Every now and then, a bus would pass ours and I’d stifle and involuntary gasp - forgetting and remembering that cars drive on the opposite side of the road from home here. It would sometimes appear we were about to have a head on collision. We were also told that lamb (um. If you were to order it to eat) is very expensive in Scotland. That much of it is imported from New Zealand. “Huh. That’s surprising. There are so many of them.” I muttered, thinking supply and demand. “Maybe they use them for fleece?” Andrea suggested. “Well. Why don’t they eat them after that?” Andrea looked at me to assess if I was joking or if I was really being an airhead. “Ohhhh. They grow their hair back. Right.” I replied - truly having an airhead moment. I’d like to tell you that was my last airhead moment of the day but I’d be lying. We saw a border collie on a tractor with his farmer driving him out to the pasture to herd the sheep. The border collie could not wait to get down to business. The Scottish countryside is beautiful. Stone walls zig zag across green fields. We saw a small waterfall in a hillside, castle and monastery ruins. We rode through Glasgow which was nothing like I’d imagined it. I said this to Andrea and she agreed, adding, “Yeah. It looked like Hartford (Connecticut).” Prior to reaching any city, the bus rumbled through what could be classified as civilization. A Frank & Benny’s New York Italian restaurant stood roadside and Andrea said, “Huh. As opposed to Italian/Italian.” We explored Edinburgh a bit this evening. We ducked inside St. John’s church. I say, “ducked inside” and Andrea says “broke in” but it was open. Really. I love the old churches overseas. So beautiful. We later settled on a restaurant that could take us without reservations (pro-tip: if you pick a restaurant on a top 10 list, it’s likely you will need a reservation). This place is fairly close to our hotel, which is good because when Andrea returned from the bathroom she announced, “I lost our map. It fell in the toilet.” Andrea consulted the menu and announced, “I’m going to order the steak. 14 pounds.” “14 pounds?!” I said in wonder, imagining a Fred Flintstone style brontosaurus steak. “Ohhhhh. The price!” I realized. Imagine all the joy I must bring to Andrea’s life with my airhead moments! As you drive in Scotland and leave one town to enter another, a small signs says, “Haste ye back”. We’d be interested in hastening back to Scotland based on what we’ve seen so far. 


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