Wednesday, March 20, 2013


This weekend, I experienced an entirely new feeling called DSL; Deep Scottish Love. This feeling comes from within the heart, and it can hit you at anytime; like when you're walking along the rocky shore of a loch, hiking through a forest trail or just viewing the snow- capped mountains from the window seat of a bright yellow van that just happens to have the words "wild and sexy" painted on it.
Our trip to Scotland began on Thursday afternoon, when about 50 students from AIFS left King's Cross station at about 2 pm. The train ride lasted about four hours, and we passed through English countryside and rode right along the ocean for a while.

When we arrived in Edinburgh, it was already dark, but we had a chance to explore the city a bit after we had settled into our hostel. A few friends and I ate at a local pub called The Last Drop and then we ventured near the Edinburgh castle on the hill. When we paid for dinner, we noticed that there is a difference in appearance between British and Scottish pounds, although they are equal in value and can be used in both places.
On our first day on the road, our bright yellow Haggis tour buses carried us to the highlands. Our tour guides, Stevie and Scott the Scot (who wore a kilt all weekend) filled us in on some Scottish history and culture. We got used to their Scottish accents and learned to answer with an “aye” for all things affirmative. We stopped at several places on the way to our next hostel in Loch Ness, including a few castles and scenic overlooks.
There was beauty everywhere we looked. It is not hard to find in such green countryside. We had the most fun just exploring the places where our bus stopped.

On the way to our next hostel in Loch Ness, we got to stop, get off of the bus and do some sight-seeing every so often. Some of these stops included a few castles and scenic overlooks. We also had the chance to see some deer up close as well as a few “hairy coos” which are furry, highland cattle. By the end of the trip, we had become used to the sight of sheep in the middle of the road.

There was beauty everywhere we looked. It was not hard to find in such a thriving countryside with wild heather growing all over and the crumbling dry stone walls. 
One of my favorite stops was right by the shore of the ocean on the Isle of Skye, which we covered our second day on the road. The shore was pebbly and we got to climb some of the huge rocks that the tide had left behind. We got some great photos of each other with the mountains and the ocean surrounding us. 

Lake Loch Ness was incredibly smooth and intriguing. There is so much legend behind that lake and whatever is living underneath its depths. Stevie told us that the lake is extremely long and deep and that creatures move into the lake from the ocean through the lock system every so often. He believes that the Loch Ness monster is actually a huge oarfish, and he claims that he has seen one jump before. Personally, I am not sure if I believe in something like the Loch Ness monster, but I have really enjoyed seeing all the Nessie souvenirs. 

We got to try haggis at for dinner at our hostel one night, and we also learned how to put on our own kilts for a Tartan toga party. This trip to Scotland was filled to the brim with raw beauty and the country has become one of my most favorite. I hope to go hiking through the mountains someday in the future and I know that I definitely will be returning.

1 comment:

  1. It looks gorgeous there! :)