Saturday, September 22, 2018

Edinburgh, St. Andrews and Stirling Castle, Scotland Trip

Our August 2018 Trip to Edinburgh and St. Andrews, Scotland

     Sweetface and I took a trip to see our daughter Erin and her husband Sean. They have been living in St. Andrews for the past year while Sean studied church history at St. Andrews University.  (They have since then returned home to the USA.) We wanted to visit them before they had to leave. We both loved Scotland!  Here was our first glimpse of Scotland at the airport--a gentleman in his kilt! We saw many more while we were there.

     We first spent a night and day in Edinburgh, where as luck would have it, they were having their annual "Fringe"event, with street performers of all types and kinds, foods, music, and entertainment everywhere.  We were fortunate, indeed, to experience such festivities with Erin and Sean. We enjoyed touring Edinburgh Castle as well as the Queen's castle, "Hollyrood".

     Then we went to their charming home in St. Andrews. For the past year they didn't even need a car, as you can walk the whole town in a few minutes. The college, the shops, the people, and the history are all wonderful. This is the lovely apartment where they lived in the most charming village, followed by scenes from the town and St. Andrews University and the surrounding sights.


     We even had the rare opportunity to play golf , just a block away from their home, at the renowned St. Andrews Golf Course, where golf was first invented! (Does "putt-putt" count?)

And the seacoast is just a few minutes walk away, where we found pretty pieces of sea glass.

     Our last day in Scotland we took an hour's drive to visit Stirling Castle, where my ancestor Mary Stewart was born in the mid 1400's, the daughter of King James IV. It was an eerie feeling experiencing being in a place that I know my very DNA came from, and hearing the local Scots speaking in their regional, unfamiliar dialects which were impossible to understand. It all tugged strongly on my heart in a mysterious way which I cannot describe Sometimes I fought the tears, knowing  a bit about the tragedies and struggles that were born there. The beauty of the place was breathtaking. 

     And who knew that the official animal of Scotland is the Unicorn! You see them everywhere--even while sitting in the Royal Thrones. Do you think Mary Stewart saw me sitting there?

Stirling Castle is famous for it's collection of The Stirling Tapestries, including 
this heartbreaker from the series, "The Hunt of the Unicorn."

I even brought one home as a souvenir.

Rosie likes it. 

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  1. Oh, lucky you! I'm determined to get there some day. Lots of Scottish DNA from my grandmother, via Cape Breton, Nova Scotia. Enjoyed your photos and narration!

    1. Thanks Brad. Yes, Scotland is now my favorite country—after America of course! I hope you get there soon.

  2. How wonderful and what a dream come true!! It would be fun to live somewhere that allows me to walk most places. Your daughter's apartment is so charming. The sea glass looks plentiful there. Love your unicorn pillow. And kilts....well I'm just not a fan! Lol

  3. Loved your post! Living where you can walk everywhere is great. It's too bad there are so few places in the US where you can do that. My hubby and I lived in the Netherlands for three years and I left my heart in Amersfoort where we walked the historic city for everything.
    Did a kilt every fly up for a peek?

    1. How wonderful that must have been, and how hard to leave. I have visited Amsterdam and Haarlem, and loved them. As for the kilt peeking, I refuse to incriminate anyone, including myself! 😂

  4. LOL, I guess I will have to go to Scotland and keep a sharp eye on kilts if it is a windy day.
    We love Haarlem! Amsterdam is just way too crazy.

    When we got back from a trip in May I decide I had to write a little book about the 1661 story in Amersfoort, free beer and pretzels and a boulder that caused so much controversy the city buried it in 1674. After two centuries the story didn't die so the city decided to embrace it in 1903 when they dug it up and it is displayed. Fun!

    1. I visited the home/clock shop of Corrie ten Boom in Haarlem, from the book/movie “The Hiding Place”. Wonderful. Amsterdam is so full of beauty if you can ignore the dark side. Please send info on your book when it is finished!