Down to my last day and a half, I end up in Glasgow with part of the previous crew. On Tuesday I was graced my own private tour guide as he's currently jobless (good luck w/ that, dude!) and we set out to 'see the sites.' The first stop was the Bontanical Garden. They really did it up nice with some full on rain forest areas that felt nice and warm inside... many [naked] statues... and my favorite, the koi pond. Walked along the great Clyde River up to a HUUUUGE museum. My favorite was an incredibly large mobile of white plaster heads, all the same face, but with different emotions. VERY wierd. We took the underground to the Museum of Modern Art. My favorite was actually the statue outside: a horse with rider in metal, finished with an orange street cone on the rider's head. Quirky.
That night we were invited to "tea" (dinner) at Murdo's house up the road. He made us mince & tatties which is like a hamburger meat stirfry and mashed potatoes. THE BEST DINNER I had since I'd been in Scotland! I again had some major appreciation for having found my way into this group of friends and actually getting to meet some locals and see how they were living. We also had some communal vodka appreciation. That's pretty much how they were living, at least through the festival!
Next day was my flight... I was playing it safe by leaving for Frankfurt the day before the flight that leaves for Fairbanks because that one only happens once a week. When I got to Frankfurt, I suddenly realized I felt VERY ill-equipped without my Lonely Planet guide book that I always have on EVERY country I visit. So here I am without a Germany LP in the biggest airport I think I've ever seen in my life. Thank goodness some good instincts kick in and I find some information desk. She says no problem, take the train to the major station then take a bus to the hostel. Super. Well I take the train alright, but I find the bus stop just in time to find that the last bus, a 10:31pm, has been gone for about 9 minutes. I'm very unhappy about this, but determined NOT to sleep in the airport. I start walking straight down the road from the terminal and realize very quickly that I'm definitely in the "red district." You name it, it can be purchased. I'm pretty unhappy with the situation which might have been apparent to the guy in the Ramada nametag on his break saying "Excuse me, can I help you?" Praise God. With a detectible Italian AND German accent, this guy is speaking English which is fantastic because, well, I haven't been in Deutsch class since Sophomore year. Yes, I explain, I need a hostel. "You can just stay with me, I live right on this block!" Well, I explain, its just that I don't know you very well, so if you could just point me to a hostel that might be best. He walked me all the way to a hostel, thank goodness!
It was there that I thought I'd try their Apfelwine which is... a cider? Maybe? I met an English guy named Pete who came with me to have a beer w/ the helpful guy. We had a good time, and found some KILLER pasta in an extremely shady part of town. I'd never have braved it if it weren't for the one who was living and working right on that street! It was worth it. I passed this huge building with a bunch, and I mean a BUNCH of neon hearts all over it and thought I just don't belong here. Haha... good thing.
During the course of that evening I was THIS CLOSE to going on to Switzerland for a week with Pete. I remained undecided till the morning, but the minute I woke up, I knew I wanted to just get home. I got back on the train to the airport, and before I knew it, I was buckled into my own row and sleeping as soundly as possible on an impossibly huge jet.
And what have we learned? Highland cows are the coolest. Scottish accents are hot. Giftshops are plaid..... and modern sculptures of the great Braveheart resemble Mel Gibson.