Yesterday met all my expectations for a first day in Glasgow. We found a coffee place right across the street and I got a latte that was satisfactory enough to power me through the morning. We walked about 3 miles to the Necropololis- a Victorian cemetary on a hill just beyond the Mungo cathedral which was also beautiful to look at.
Little bits of charm on the way there – seeing a kindergarten class cross the road and enter their school, chatting with two older ladies to make sure we were headed in the right direction and also to 3 muscular young men who were working on the outside of the buildings about the kinds of repair they were doing. We found a cool little pocket garden in a container built to look like a big apothecary cabinet.
We left the cemetery around 11 with enough time to walk back to our reservation for tea. But it turns out there are two tea places by the same name and we ended up at a different one and past our reservation time. Luckily we were able to get a table and enjoy the 3 story tea tray and a conversation with our young server named Cuiran from Ireland. He was excited to find out we were from Washington – we couldn’t quite understand how he got excited about our state but we had a fun conversation with him. He confirmed our travel plans to the Botanical gardens and told us we should go to a bar named Tabac that he highly recommended so we stashed our leftover tea food in our hotel room, caught the subway to the gardens and encountered our first rain as we walked to the glasshouses.
Inside it was steamy and deserted and we had a quiet stroll among all the tropical things growing there as we read the historical panels that told the history of the gardens. The gardens got locked up as we were on our way out so good timing on our part. The subway was an easy catch back to down town and we went searching for the bar. It took us awhile – Glasgow has streets and then lanes with the same name and its a bit confusing but we finally found it in one of those little lanes and had a drink and another conversation with locals. That mother and son recommended a pasta place right down the way so we went there for dinner and felt so lucky to have gotten such amazing tips from locals on our first day.
I had a lousy night of sleep however – I don’t know what time zone I’m operating on right now! It’s not Seattle time and it’s not Scotland time. Maybe somewhere in between. Today we traveled by train to Oban. I love train rides, actually anything where I get to travel and look at the scenery. I feel like the Scotland landscape I am seeing looks like eastern Washington foothills on the shores of Puget sound, like a big version of the Orcas Island. Oban looks quaint on its curved bay and are excited to explore more tomorrow.