Edinburgh: high mile castles, bagpipes, and angelic views.

Edinburgh beckoned to us from an hour away. trains are the major mode of public transportation, so getting there was generally simple.

we emerged from the train station in awe and wonder as the sun shone brightly over the city. sommkid was immediately mesmerized with the castle.

needless to say, we begin the journey up the steep hill toward the thick walls.

after some leg work, we made it through the iron gates and into the fortress.

the city sparkled in the sunlight.

we visited great halls and Crown Jewels and then stopped for high tea.

sommkid loves this formidable British tradition.

the air began to chill even more, and so we began our walk down the royal mile.

bagpipes greeted us outside the cathedral, and we stopped to have a listen to the pure Scottish tune.

the north bridge winds were fierce as the day began to fade. we crossed in haste, but with enough time to catch Calton Hill get caught in the rays.

the scenes were angelic.

the day was good.

air adhart gu ionad dachaigh!

Boxing Day: time for long walks, rugrat tickles, and snow.

we awoke to a morning of crisp sunrise over the eastern hills, the ice warming from the dim streaks of light that hit the Paisley window pane.

from first glance, it was a white Boxing Day, as the ice which glazed the streets were unapparent from the harbor of our hotel.

disembarking from our attic room, sommkid squealed at the thought of snowmen before breakfast, and then sobered with the realization that the blinding sun was melting the icy frost before she could even make one round sphere.

the sommelier, six days now without his luggage, complained little as we walked to Elderslie, taking in the sights of the small culturally important town along the way.

the sky was a bright blue and the sun crisp on the eyes. sommkid mentioned she wished she had her sunglasses, and at first I agreed.

then, centuries old buildings displayed their worth as we traversed our way down the main road, masonry carved so the light reflected beautifully between the stones.

we arrived at home base out of breath and dying of thirst, and in need of snuggles and hugs and tickles with nieces and nephews.

Boxing Day, all told, was a day of giving to the poor. not to be deemed idle on a holiday, we plunged ourselves toward Gleniffer Braes, the local mountain that provides heavenly sights of Glasgow, especially on a clear day.

it was the perfect gift for our four-season-climate starved souls.

the packed snow was a few inches thick, and sommkid made the most of her journey.

that night’s roast was a scintillating end to a three day Christmas celebration with family; tomorrow we begin to journey on, taking in more sights across this small and dynamic country.

air adhart a Dhùn Èideann! slainte!