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Friday · September 05 2003

The red Renault has stopped for the weekend in the Highlands, more specifically the town of Pitlochry. We're essentially in the Scottish equivalent of Estes Park, CO or some cute town in Vermont. We have your beautiful scenery, gift shops, and overpriced food. There is alot more, though. Stace and I are really making the most of having a car (more on that in a minute) and enjoying vacation without being stuck to bus schedules, ancient churches, and museums. For instance, tonight we're going to see some Scottish theatre and tomorrow we're going to Braemar for the Braemar gathering. The gathering is a Highland games event with the Queen in attendance and all types of traditional games (caber toss, tug o war, hammer throw), bagpipes, and dancing.

The car. The red Renault. It's really not that bad. I'm already accustomed to driving on the left side of the road from the right side of the car. We just picked up the car yesterday when we left Edinburgh and by the end of the day I was whirling around the twisty turns. We had a few scares with some wide load tour buses on the narrow roads, but it's been much easier than I thought. Stacy navigates with the maps and yells out "Left" and points where to get out of the roundabout and I manage to listen and keep us intact. Overall, touring with a car has made this trip an order of magnitude better than our last trip to France and Spain 5 years ago. Lots more freedom to go where we please.

The food. The next two nights in Edinburgh were much better than the crappy Chinese food. I still haven't had neeps, tatties, haggis, or any other indeterminate Scottish "favorites", but that's just fine. I don't get the feeling that anyone here eats em much either.

I see the Cubs are hanging in there for me to root like a maniac when we get back. I think we know we're pretty hardcore when Stace and I hit connect in the Internet cafe and check the Cubs standings before checking email from family and friends. 4 of 5 from the Cards. Very nice.

Overall we're having a great time and I'd like to write more, but the internet prices at this cafe are capitalism in its purest form. Here's the quick schedule for the rest of the trip:
Saturday: Braemar gathering and more castles (I am with Stacy, the queen of castles, so I could expect no less)
Sunday: Whiskey distilleries, Loch Ness and stay in Inverness
Monday & Tuesday: Isle of Skye
Wed & Thurs: Southern Scotland, staying in Ayrshire
Friday: travel back to London
Saturday: Chicago
Sunday: Sit on my ass and watch some football

We'll probably be able to check online once more if anyone needs to email me.

What you had to say:
September 07 2003

Lisa and I are very jealous. Sounds like more fun than working and painting the nursery.

The one thing you two did miss was the Cubs game on Wednesday. The most exciting win of the year, without doubt. They were down 6-0 and came back to win, thanks to Alou going 5 for 5! It was a crazy game and ended up with Woody Williams coming on in relief and giving up the lead for good.

Woo-woo.

September 10 2003

Cannot wait to see the pictures. We plan on going to Scotland someday (soon?), and there's nothing like traveling to another part of the world on invaluable advice of a friend for the 'must see's' and probably more importantly, the 'stay-away from's'. Of course, we'll have room on our itinerary to explore the things that we enjoy--replace castles with pubs, theater with clubs, and bad chinese with good grub(s). that last part was just so it all rhymed.

Happy birthday to Stacy!

Have a great rest of your trip, and I'll see you in a couple of weeks.


September 10 2003

Yes! Happy Birthday to Stacy- you're probably going to come home to numerous cards/mail in your mailbox!
Steve- you heading to Chicago in a couple of weeks? What for?
So far Cali is treating me pretty well...
getting adjusted I guess...
can't wait to talk to you guys when you get back!

September 11 2003

Oh, there's been no shortage of pubs either, Stevie. We had a great time in Inverness at a pub called Hootananny. The brewmaster at the Black Isle Brewery suggested it for the fiddle band and it was a great night out. We only went to the one play and we really enjoyed it. Being in Pitlochry, which is a countryish resort town, there weren't too many other nightlife options anyway.

As for pictures, you will be absolutely *inundated*. I would guess between the Canon film and the Nikon digital, we have over 1000 pictures. We'll certainly do something to edit/filter the highlights online so the slideshow is a manageable size to view.

Dan, I realized the other day how soon the baby girl will be coming. Things must be really getting exciting for you two. Can't wait to see everyone when we get back.

September 11 2003

Thanks for the birthday wishes! We have had a great time - Jason is currently putting together an update so I won't go into detail. Let's just say I spent my birthday with seals, Lochs, and a Weimeraner!

Can't wait to catch up with everyone when we get back - hopefully the Cubs will be in first!

© 2003 Jason Keglovitz