Scotland! (Part 1)

Woah, that first post was a bit heavy. I feel like I just need to say that the post chronicled my very long FIRST day in Helsinki. After that day, my time has been amazing and I’ve had almost no troubles, except maybe the cold…but like the Finns say “There’s no such thing as bad weather, just bad clothing”.

With that out of the way (I hope it cleared anything up if it seemed like I’ve been miserable or something in that vein!)…

I’m in Scotland! This is my first time out of Finland since arriving, and it is more or less kicking off the traveling that I will be doing for the rest of my time abroad. It’s been really windy, but other than that, it’s been perfect – sunny, warm, and there’ve been clear, blue skies for the most part. Of course, it snowed in Helsinki on Thursday, so the weather here in Scotland has seemed pretty warm (at least to me!).

This has been my second day in Edinburgh. Tomorrow I head to Glasgow to watch Celtic FC – arguably Scotland’s most famous soccer team — play Kilmarnock. And from there, I head to St. Andrews. The forecast is supposed to be “classic Scotland weather” – 90 percent chance of rain and 25-40 mph winds. Sounds like a blast!

Thank you to Elizabeth for letting me stay with you in Edinburgh for my first couple days in Scotland! I’ll update again soon (either tomorrow night after the game or on Monday).

Click on the pictures for a bigger view:

The Scott Monument (the first thing I saw once I got off my bus in Edinburgh)

The Scott Monument (the first thing I saw once I got off my bus in Edinburgh)

The Palace of Holyroodhouse, the Queen's summer residence

The Palace of Holyroodhouse, the Queen’s summer residence

The gardens of the Holyroodhouse Palace. The Queen has a party in these gardens at the beginning of the summer every year.

The gardens of the Holyroodhouse Palace. The Queen has a party in these gardens at the beginning of the summer every year.

A view of Edinburgh Castle from the bottom of the hill

A view of Edinburgh Castle from the bottom of the hill

So many stone buildings here in Scotland. Such a different feel from Helsinki.

So many stone buildings here in Scotland. Such a different feel from Helsinki.

A view of Edinburgh

A view of Edinburgh

The front entrance of Edinburgh Castle

The front entrance of Edinburgh Castle

The oldest standing building in all of Edinburgh. The chapel was the only building left standing after Edinburgh Castle was destroyed hundreds of years ago.

The oldest standing building in all of Edinburgh. The chapel was the only building left standing after Edinburgh Castle was destroyed hundreds of years ago.

The Whiskey Shop (and free samples)!

The Whiskey Shop (and free samples)!

The War Memorial for all fallen Scottish soldiers

The War Memorial for all fallen Scottish soldiers

My hair was messed up, but it was REALLY windy on the top of the castle

My hair was messed up, but it was REALLY windy on the top of the castle

A view of Edinburgh from the top of Edinburgh Castle

A view of Edinburgh from the top of Edinburgh Castle

Another view from the top of Edinburgh Castle. It's a huge castle, and we spent almost four hours just seeing everything (including the Crown Jewels!)

Another view from the top of Edinburgh Castle. It’s a huge castle, and we spent almost four hours just seeing everything (including the Crown Jewels!)

Brianna (left), Elizabeth (middle) and I on top of Edinburgh Castle. Brianna is studying in London this semester and Elizabeth is here in Edinburgh. We worked together at USD last year. Three students based in three different cities coming together!

Brianna (left), Elizabeth (middle) and I on top of Edinburgh Castle. Brianna is studying in London this semester and Elizabeth is here in Edinburgh. We worked together at USD last year. Three students based in three different cities coming together!

Another view from Edinburgh Castle. This part of the city is called "The Athens of the North" (according to a postcard).

Another view from Edinburgh Castle. This part of the city is called “The Athens of the North” (according to a postcard).

Me and what I assume is the guy who shot the 1 o'clock shot today. The cannon is shot everyday at 1 o'clock to alert the sailors of the time.

Me and what I assume is the guy who shot the 1 o’clock shot today. The cannon is shot everyday at 1 o’clock to alert the sailors of the time.

Another view of Edinburgh Castle from the bottom of the hill

Another view of Edinburgh Castle from the bottom of the hill

Lunch and tasty cider

Lunch and tasty cider

Lunch (or breakfast!). A true Scottish breakfast: haggis, lorne sausage, scrambled eggs, bacon, Heinz baked beans, a potato scone, a fried tomato, mushrooms, toast, and cider to wash it down!

Lunch (or breakfast!). A true Scottish breakfast: haggis, lorne sausage, scrambled eggs, bacon, Heinz baked beans, a potato scone, a fried tomato, mushrooms, toast, and cider to wash it down!

I would tell you what this is, but I honestly have no idea. But castles are cool!

I would tell you what this is, but I honestly have no idea. But castles are cool!

A church, but I don't know anything else!

A church, but I don’t know anything else!

Me and a statue of Adam Smith, the father of modern economics. Thanks Adam!

Me and a statue of Adam Smith, the father of modern economics. Thanks Adam!

The outside of the Scottish Parliament

The outside of the Scottish Parliament

A view of the inside of the Scottish Parliament. I wish I was an MSP.

A view of the inside of the Scottish Parliament. I wish I was an MSP.

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