Happy May Day! I've been studying all about May Day customs in Ireland so I know all about the celebrations there, but now I'm in Scotland!! Woohoo! However, it took me awhile to arrive at my rest last night-- a journey that convinced me God does work in mysterious ways.
Okay, well, perhaps that's too much credence to give to the unfortunate/fortunate events that occurred yesterday, but still, it was an adventure that ended quite well for me.
I left Ireland at 3:30PM and took a flight directly to Glasgow-Prestwick Airport, about an hour train ride from Glasgow proper. I had decided to stay in the coastal town of Largs for the night and had booked a room in a guesthouse there. However, they had never confirmed receiving my credit card information, and I had forgotten to print off the confirmation of my information request (that told me if I sent my credit card info they would hold a spot for me). But, I figured it would all work out when I got there.
WRONG! I wandered to my presumed B&B after two train rides and no directions to the guesthouse only to find that I was definitely
not on their books. My heart sank. They called some other B&B's they knew of-- no vacancies. So I went to a couple more and knocked on the door-- no room there either! I was utterly discouraged and lost with what to do (the town wasn't so big as to have hostels or anything like that), and with it being a holiday weekend and getting late, I didn't want to roam around too much more only to find all the places full. So, I gave in and called the Brodies in Edinburgh (the in-laws of my pastor at USC who I had arranged to stay with starting tonight) and asked if it was okay for me to stay with them yesterday evening. They told me to come on over, and even said they'd pick me up at the station! So, after two more train rides, I was finally in Edinburgh with a roof over my head!
I arrived in Edinburgh at 10:20PM, but I suppose I did get to see a good bit of the country, if even for a short time. I saw Largs and the west coast some, which is absolutely gorgeous; I saw Glasgow for about 10 minutes as I switched from one station to the next (it seemed like a pretty cool city); and I saw a stretch of Edinburgh, too!
Yet, the welcome I got in Edinburgh was all I needed to make my disheartening introduction to Scotland (my failure to find accommodation in Largs) a wonderful one. The Brodies (Pat & Ian) are such wonderful people, and they both greeted me with hugs and told me that their home was my home! Their hospitality is tremendous! They brought me with them to church this morning, introduced me to some of their friends there, fed me, gave me all I could want or need-- Ian took me on a driving/walking tour around the outskirts and into Edinburgh-- it's just been wonderful and more than I could have ever asked for or expected! Why would I want to stay a night anywhere else if I could be with these wonderful people? So, anyway, a bad and frustrating situation turned into a good one, and it's been a terrific visit so far! I hope to walk around more of Edinburgh tomorrow, and maybe go out to the countryside or farther north on Tuesday. I'm playing it by ear right now!
So, Scotland is a beautiful country, I love the accents, I love the people so far, and I'm looking forward to seeing more!
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