January 25th is a big deal in the U.K. because of Burns Night, a birthday celebration for Robert Burns, the well renowned poet. I honestly had no idea how significant this day was (sorry Robert) but it became very clear to me when my friends and I tried to make reservations for a “Burns Dinner” at various pubs but couldn’t because every place was essentially booked. I know, very American of us.
Thankfully however, the Scottish Parliament was hosting its own Burns Dinner so we attended that instead. This dinner consisted of an ode to the Haggis (a man in a kilt recited a poem honoring the Haggis), a bagpipe performance, a main course of Haggis served alongside Neeps and Tatties, a group recitation of the poem Tam o’ Shanter (which is already hard to understand but even more so when you throw in various accents) and very strong Whiskey that I could smell a mile away. It was definitely an event like none other but I was grateful to partake in this cultural experience.
If you saw in the header picture, I visited Hogwarts! Or the University of Glasgow, whichever name you prefer. While none of the films were actually shot on the campus, it was pretty obvious where the movie got its inspiration from. Other than the beautiful campus, Glasgow has many other attractive sites such as the botanic garden (yes, I did visit another botanic garden) and its glasshouses.
Because Glasgow is only about an hour and ten minutes away from Edinburgh, I decided to hop on a bus to explore the city. While exploring usually comes very easily to me due to Google Maps and its guidance, I had NO service on my phone. No service = no data = lost Airin. I tried going to McDonalds for WiFi (and potentially other reasons) but they required that I put in my phone number to get a code to access the WiFi so other than satisfying my chicken nugget craving, it was no help whatsoever.
THANKFULLY though, because I had saved the region of Glasgow on Google Maps (traveling pro tip btw), the streets and various locations still appeared on my screen and as long as my blue dot was going the right way, I knew I was somewhat fine. In light of these circumstances, I realized how much I rely on the internet to help me get around and how maybe I can learn to use other tools (asking locals for assistance, looking at maps beforehand etc.) to become less dependent on this rectangular piece of plastic.
Back to Edinburgh
On Sundays after church, I usually frolic around Old Town in Edinburgh with my camera so please enjoy these practice shots! Cheers 🙂