What a week it has been since I wrote my last blog. Living in the Kansas City area, which by the way includes both Missouri and Kansas, has meant being in high celebration mode with the Chiefs Super Bowl victory. Normally I'm not that interested or involved in professional sports but this team, their skills, attitude-everything about them certainly caught my attention. Now I am back to my regularly scheduled programming which is the Scotland and Ireland tour.
Hadn't realized how groggy I was on that first day until I went to identify the places in the photos I took. I remembered bits and pieces of what our guide, Kevin, had said but it's definitely been a journey of research for me. I'm not sad about that as it's been really fun; very much reliving it. We actually flew into Edinburgh but went straight from the airport to Glasgow where we stayed the first night. Our rooms wouldn't be ready until mid afternoon but there was a stop at the hotel to drop off our bags, eat lunch and "rest." Then back on the bus to begin our tour.
There was heavy cloud cover that day, so my sense of direction was really skewed. Now I know, from the hotel we drove east to go more into the heart of Glasgow and drive around George Square. From there our veteran CIE International driver, Pat, (Irish actually) and our encyclopedic Scottish guide, Kevin, took us on numerous streets continuously sharing fascinating information about what we were seeing. We made our way south and then turned west which was when we passed The Clutha Bar with its very recognizable mural. Kevin shared it was the site of a disastrous helicopter crash in 2013. He mentioned it was a regular hangout for many of Glasgow’s entertainers and that comedian/actor Billy Connolly had been one of the first people to the scene. He has also been involved in seeing it rebuilt.
The Clutha sits on the north side of the River Clyde which we crossed back and forth over on the way to the area called Finnieston. We stopped outside of one of the Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum buildings. High on the hill above us we could see the distinctive architecture of University of Glasgow. Stretching out opposite the building are Kelvingrove lawn bowls (big sport in Scotland) and a tennis centre.
We were not long at this stop so no opportunity to investigate the nearby park or even go into the museum (which has 22 galleries so definitely not the time needed). Still an enjoyable stop as the Locharbriggs red sandstone and Spanish Baroque style was outstanding in itself.
It seems a "discovery" in reliving this day has been how much I would love to go back and have more time in Glasgow! With all the links I have included anyone who wants to take the time to investigate further, and that will include me, should be busy until the next blog! Also the beginning of the Gallery for Day 1 is now up.