Wee Little Time in Scotland

As I write, I’m on a plane back to Raleigh from Scotland where we visited my stepdaughter who is a junior at the University of Edinburgh or Uni as they call it. These are my top learnings from my week abroad:

  1. Haggis seems to be a breakfast food although there are Haggis rolls you can purchase in nice little shops throughout the Kingdom. When I asked waiters or locals what Haggis was, the answer was unclear. These two words were themes in the description: bloody and intestine. I did not eat Haggis.
  2. Everything is smaller in Scotland – the cars, the bags of potatoes (and you’d think they have a lot of those being next door to Ireland), even the rolls of toilet paper pale in comparison to a Costco lot. I like big! I am a glutton.
  3. They don’t use top sheets. One night I pulled the sheet back and after sticking to the rubber mattress pad for hours discovered they had neglected to proffer both fitted and flat bedding! I though it was a mistake until I went to the second, third and fourth hotels and discovered a pattern. The upside? Wet the bed and you’re in great shape.
  4. Their birds are stupid. You know when you’re approaching birds in the road in America in a vehicle, they fly away? They don’t in the Highlands of Scotland. I’ll leave it at that – twice.
  5. I knew they drove on the wrong side of the road, what I didn’t know was the difference in lingo around driving. Duel carriageway ahead… many parents pushing strollers before us? No! Just two lanes coming up on the motorway (highway). Slow Lorries next two miles… girls with the same name meandering by the road? Nah. Mac trucks going up a mountain. And lord only knows what the speed limit was. They had speed cameras for days but seldom shared their expectations about how fast you could go. I fear the rental car company is going to be receiving some bad news in the next couple of weeks from the Highlands Motorway Patrol.
  6. Perhaps the most disconcerting thing I discovered is that in every restaurant, store or hotel we stayed in, the light switch for the bathroom was on the wall OUTSIDE of the bathroom. Julie was surprised several times when she entered and shortly after the small room went dark. I could not resist. I pondered flipping the loo switch in a coffee shop when a stranger entered near our table. I decided against that prank, but boy was it tempting. I wish we had the feature at work.

We had a grand time in Europe cooking a traditional American Thanksgiving meal for 15 of Lizzie’s closet friends and hiking Arthur’s Seat on a brisk yet sunny afternoon. The whole fam is returning in March. I’ll be better prepared for the differences next time.

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1 Comment

  1. Susan Permar

     /  November 17, 2022

    well here’s hoping your diplomacy out ways your pranksterism!

    Reply

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