Hi guys. This blog post is going to be a bit down and dirty. 😉 I’m running on about an hour and a half of sleep in the last two days, compounded with almost 5 miles of walking and bed is calling my name…loudly.
I set off from Atlanta yesterday on my roundabout path to Glasgow. Who is it at airlines who comes up with these itineraries anyway? Part of it was my own fault. I sacrificed a few hours and an extra flight segment in the name of a half off business class frequent flyer ticket. All journeys have to start with the traditional luggage and shoe pics though!
Finally, after 3 flights and about 18 hours of travel, I arrived in Glasgow to find the day partly sunny and relatively warm. Definitely better weather than I was expecting based on the long-range forecasts I had been perusing from home. I actually made it through immigration and customs with absolutely no waiting and made my first stop in the airport at W H Smith to top up my UK cell phone. For 20 GBP I have 4000 minutes, 4000 texts and 2GB of data to get me through my 18 day trip. Should be plenty provided I don’t get carried away tweeting pics. Then I remember what data cell services is like in the Highlands and I stopped worrying so much. 😉
Next stop was the Avis rental counter to pick up my chariot for trip. Knowing that the girls from OutlanderPod would be joining me later in the trip, I booked a minivan (or people carrier as they are known in the UK). Unfortunately, their only automatic transmission one came back with a damaged tyre this morning ( I have absolutely NO IDEA how something like that could hapeny. Hush Mom and Vicki. Stop laughing.), so they substituted a station wagon (estate car in UK speak). Not sure I’m crazy about it. I kind of like the way the minivan sits up higher on the road. I have some emails in to Avis to see if I can swap it for something else if one comes in.
Even on little sleep, I had no problem making the short drive from Glasgow to Edinburgh and arrived at the Edinburgh Marriott by 3 pm local time. It looks much the same as it did when Mom and I stayed here on our first trip to Scotland. As a matter of fact, I am sipping a Strathmore water and munching on Walker’s shortbread from the Executive Lounge right now, just like I did on that trip. There was no time then to rest though, I had to be on the Royal Mile very shortly for the first Outlander related gathering of the trip.
I changed my clothes, hopped in a taxi and arrived at the Albanach Bar to meet my fellow Outlanders for a pre-theatre dinner before heading over to the Lyceum Theatre to see Outlander cast member Grant O’Rourke star in The Venetian Twins. I took some time to snap some pics on the way to the Lyceum and even capture some video of a bagpiper playing on the Royal Mile.
We arrived at the Lyceum which is a beautiful theatre. Luckily the play was hysterically funny and I was in no danger of falling asleep once the house lights went down. Afterwards, Grant was very sweet and came out to talk and talk pictures will the 25+ Outlander fans who were in attendance.
After the theater, Deb and I started out with the best intentions of finding the proper bus route to return to the hotel for the night but ended up catching a taxi instead, just as my fitbit was registering my 10,000th step for the day. All told, the step count was at 11,272 by the time I was back in the room.
Well, as usual, I think that was a pretty jam-packed first day and I surely didn’t want to start out behind in posting on the blog! I am headed for a well-earned rest.
Stay tuned tomorrow as I head up to Crieff for the 2nd annual Outlander UK Gathering.
Slàn leat an-dràsta!
Love your blogs!!! Keepem’ coming!!! You are so brave-there is no way I would ever try driving-total mayhem would ensue! So glad you got to see Grant on stage-just a wee bit jealous!!!
Oh goody! Loved your blog posts of your last trip and am greatly looking forward to more. I hope you got some sleep, you’ll need it I suspect as I’m sure you have a very full itinerary planned.
Mandy, I discovered your blog during your second trip to Scotland; which was packed full of fun and pure adrenaline! You reminded me of the “EverReady” Bunny Rabbit, that never ran out of energy! That trip inspired us to plan our Scotland trip for 2016. Once again, you have hit the road running. Just how cute is Grant O’Rourke and the stunning beauty of the Lyceum Theatre is just magical. Thanks again for taking us along and sharing this adventure with us.
My pleasure. I know you’ll have a wonderful time! Mandy
I’m behind on reading your blog, since I was out of town. Looking forward to catching up on your adventures. Looks like a wonderful trip already! I would love to do this someday! Have fun and safe travels!