Our first field trip of the semester was to the Scottish Borders. Nory, our hilariously entertaining tour guide and owner of Heartland Travel, picked up the Stirling USAC gang from Macrobert Arts Centre on campus in the morning. The St. Andrews students were already on the bus as they had been picked up from their school at 6am (glad I chose Stirling!). There was sparse chatter as it was a chilly, rainy day (as per usual) and too early for most college students to be communicative yet. But Nory got everyone in the sightseeing mood with a little Scottish folk music, rhythmic drumming on the steering wheel, and a short lesson in how to speak Scots. What an endearingly garbled language it is…
Our first stop was Rosslyn Chapel, of The Da Vinci Code fame. However, as it was a Sunday morning and the chapel is still a functioning church, it was closed to tours. We were all quite disappointed but Nory appeased us with coffee and tea at an adorable local cafe. Then he took us to the nearly 800-year-old castle remains behind Rosslyn Chapel and told us about his encounter with a ghost dog he had there when he was a teenager. Apparently, the site is haunted because of a large battle that took place in the deep glen over which the castle is built.
Laura Walters is a University of Cincinnati student. She studied abroad in Stirling, Scotland in Fall 2017. You can read more about Laura’s journey in Scotland on her blog. *All photos and captions courtesy of Laura.
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