ALL ABOARD THE BIG SMOKE – OLD SMOKEY EXPRESS!

Scotland is a country of many faces – one of quaint pubs in quaint towns with arguing, violent men fighting over who’s whisky is whose at the local bar to the bleakly beautiful Highlands gently gliding its awe-struck visitors into bustling Edinburgh, all of which lucky William and me spent a few days, luxuriating, pontificating and plenty more ings I’ll leave to your imagination.

We took the budget approach (I provide ample glamour to compensate) and took a Ryan Air flight from Stansted, Essex (guffaw) to bonny Glasgow Airport. Much arrival-induced clapping from yours truly, we were well on our way to our Aberdeenshire destination via rental car.

Glamour on a budget
Glamour on a budget

The last and only time I had been to Scotland before this trip was around a decade ago, staying in a camp site with my friend Sole and his mum Moni, dipping my toe in Loch Ness (no, it wasn’t devoured by hungry, hideous sea monsters), my most memorable remark being one to Ruby Wax and her family that “Americans are loud mouths!” Being much more familiar with North Wales in my youth, I found the stunning Celtic landscape highly nostalgic: the pungent odour of manure caressing my nasal canal brought back fond memories of squelching through a gumbo of cow shit and country mud in child-sized wellington boots.

Ten years on, I’m more silk and diamanté but escaping from the M25 and into nature was a real joy.

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