Europe

Mallaig to Glasgow

The ferry wasn’t cancelled! It turns out the cancellation of the ferry was in regards to low tide, not the weather at all…so that whole “let me check the weather’ spiel was a complete charade!

The ferry chugged over to Mallaig in about 25 minutes, sea spray hitting the windows the whole time. John has an remarkable ability to fall asleep in any moving vehicle that he is not steering. Planes, trains, automobiles…and now ferries.

20140418-074916.jpgWe loaded up with scotch eggs and hulahoops at Mallaig and jumped on the train that would take us to Glasgow. This route has been dubbed as one of the great scenic rail trips in the world. Included one the 100+ miles route is the 32 mile stretch of Rannoch Moor, the highest station on the British Rail network at 1,338 feet, Ben Nevis, Fort William and the Glenfinnan Viaduct (Harry Potter bridge that the Hogwart’s Express passes over.) It was 5 1/2 hours of scenic brilliance.

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The highlight of our short stay in Glasgow was seeing my old friend, Jen Munro!

20140418-100244.jpgDuring the summer of 1999, Jen and I worked at a summer camp in the mountains of North Carolina called Camp Ton-A-Wandah We taught theater, put on 3 shows and spent a couple of months being co-counselors in a cabin full of 13 year olds. I left camp that summer, determined that teaching children was not for me. Jen left camp that summer, returned for 3 more years and, upon being denied entry to the states for her fifth year due to an admin error in the visa office, ended up developing ISSOS, which she still runs 9 years later. ISSOS is an exclusive summer school program for high school students from around the word. A true multi-cultural experience (they cap each nationality at 10% to ensure true international immersion,) the students participate in academics and art. ISSOS has programs at St. Andrews and Cambridge.

Jen is a remarkable person, with a clear vision and a true calling to help children progress and develop. I am so proud of the work she has done over the last 12 years. If you’ve got high school kids…send them to ISSOS! They will be in great hands.

We leave Glasgow to head to Edinburgh, where we will catch a flight to Copenhagen. In my mind, this is were the real trip begins. We are about to head to unfamiliar territory. As a child, I visited France and Switzerland, and enjoyed it immensely as I didn’t have to worry about all the logistics that my parents were in charge of. It was easy-peazy-lemon-squeezy. I have a feeling that this time, Europe will present it’s own unique challenges and John and I will encounter. Let the adventure continue

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