This week in our semester in Scotland has been one filled with adventure; Kara and I have now seen many more castles, mountains (or ‘Bens’ as they’re often called here), and lambs as we explored Scotland. Upon finishing our writing assignments and classes this week, Kara and I have had the opportunity to do many fun things with people from Airdrie RP Church.
The first of our adventures this week was on Wednesday afternoon when Jimmy and Helen took Kara and myself out on our final Wednesday cultural trip. We went to a farmhouse near Bothwell Bridge at which a Covenanter family once resided, Kittochside Farm. The farm has since been given over to the National Museums of Scotland who have re-purposed much of the farmland into a museum of rural life in the 1940s. One particularly interesting place in the farm was a small room next to the stables where German WWII prisoners of war were housed. Contrary to what you might think, this room was not a prison; it was a lodging place for the German POWs who were made to work as farmhands on the estate. Heinrich Luckel, the German POW that spent the most time at the farmhouse, said that he enjoyed his time there and kept in contact with the family in charge of the house for years after his return to Germany. While at the farm, Kara and I also got to see piglets, lambs, calves, kittens, and a few other animals that were being raised there. My favorite was, unexpectedly, the piglets.
This past weekend Kara and I traveled with our friend Karen up to the Isle of Lewis for Stephen McCollum’s ordination. Stephen McCollum has been asked to minister to the young Presbyterian congregation in Stornoway, a town on the Isle of Lewis. A few weeks back, Kara and I–along with a handful of others–helped the McCollum family load all of their belongings onto a moving truck and sent them off to Stornoway, and this past Friday evening, Stephen was ordained as the pastor of Stornoway RP Church. Following the ordination, Kara, Karen, and I decided to stay in Stornoway for the weekend and adventure around the island. We got to see several iconic and beautiful places like the Callanish Standing Stones, the Carloway Broch, the blackhouses, and the seaside cliffs at the Butt of Lewis. During our travels to and fro between Lewis and Airdrie, we were also able to visit the Isle of Skye where seagulls tried to steal all of our chips, Loch Shiel, and the Glenfinnan viaduct, the Quiraing where we got a fun hike and a great view, the Glenbrittle Fairy Pools where people wash their feet and drink (yuck!), and the Eilean Donan Castle where we got one of the prettiest views I have ever seen.
Things are winding down for Kara and I as our time in Scotland is coming to a close. Final papers have been completed, our books have been read cover to cover, and all that’s left to do is finish our blogs and book reviews. We are both sad to leave and excited to get home and see our friends and family. Hope that you are well and see you all soon!