Home is Where You Don't Need an Adapter Plug

Friday, June 24, 2016

Hi from New York! I've officially been home from Scotland for just about a month now, so I thought it would be a good time to wrap up my thoughts on Scotland. There are a trillion things for me to say about my time in Scotland, and there are posts still in the works about my travels and my final, wonderful week in Scotland with my best friend, but I thought I'd wrap it up for now with a list of things I'll miss about my time in Edinburgh. 

I took this on my last day in Edinburgh. View of the castle from Princes Street.

I spent a lot of time while I was in Edinburgh wishing I could come home - especially in the early days. When I first arrived I insisted that home was a superior place, that I could leave Scotland right that moment and not miss or regret a single thing. 
Shock horror, I was wrong. 
So, what follows is a list, in no particular order, (that will probably grow and change) of 'Things I'll Miss (or have been missing) About Scotland'.
  1. Princes Street, which is probably my favorite place in all of Edinburgh (subhead: New Look, Ben's Cookies, Debenhams, the beautiful Waterstones)
    1. St. Andrew's Square and George Street (subhead, Harvey Nichols)
    2. 'Hiya!' being the most common greeting between people. I was beaming when I returned from my two week spring break and both the border official and bus driver greeted me this way.
    3. Grassmarket 
    4. Sunny days in Scotland, which are full with so much happiness, optimism, and carefree vibes (potentially because they're so rare)
    5. Mimi's Bakery being right around the corner from me
    6. The Royal Mile 
    7. The World's End Pub
    9. The history, beautiful architecture, and pride that I felt every second in Scotland (and Edinburgh in particular)
    10. That last beautiful week in Edinburgh with my best friend (more on that coming soon)
    11. Concerts in Glasgow (HERE WE HERE WE HERE WE FUCKING GO)
    12. The moment when I realized that I hadn't come to study abroad in the UK - I'd come to study abroad in Scotland, and there was an important difference 
    13. How absolutely nice everyone seemed to be all the time - I had some really wonderful conversations with cahsiers and sales assosiates and waiters and tellers at the bank and people who really didn't have to be that nice to me, but always, without fail, were (shoutout to the three sales associates over the course of two days who all thought I was Australian... love u guys, @ apple store, @ harvey nichols, @ the nice girl at the Hydro for the 5sos show)
    14. The Scottish accent, obviously

    There is, of course, an equally long list of Things I Don't Miss About Scotland, but, at the end of my trip, unsurprisingly for everyone but me, I have a lot of love in me for Scotland. In light of today's EU Referendum in the UK, I am feeling an intense sense of pride that Scotland voted, overwhelmingly, to Remain - and excitement that a second referendum for Scottish independence is likely in the works. I listened to Nicola Sturgen speak on the Leave vote this morning and couldn't help myself from identifying with her, and with Scotland. 

    As I settle back into my life in New York and think about the troubles my own country faces each day and in the coming months, I am thankful for my time in Edinburgh. I am also thankful for all the love and support I was given while I was there - from my family, my friends, from the IFSA-Scotland staff, from Scotland.

    My time in Scotland has undoubtedly taught me a lot about myself. Now that I'm home, I think it's up to me to decide what to do with what I've learned. For now, though, I'm going to go take a shower because I really need to do that. And also paint my nails. I'll be back soon, hopefully - both on this blog and in Scotland. 

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