From Hogwarts to Heaven

It’s almost 11pm here in the highlands, and it is almost dark.  Yes, you heard me right.  The sun rises bright and cheery at 4am, and sets at 11 here in the height of summer.  But today is the longest day, so from here it’s all downhill.

Literally, because the highlands are just that – high.  We are in a mountain village near Loch Lomond, looking out at the shores of Loch Long.  We’ll be here in this charming little B&B for two nights before moving north to Glencoe.

This morning we started in Glasgow, and headed straight to Kristen’s alma mater, the University of Glasgow.  It’s this amazing gothic monstrosity of turrets and stained glass and cloisters and rich beauty.  I called it the Church of the Brain because you really do feel, walking around there, like you WANT to learn – just to be worthy of those halls.

The university has two museums, which are free to the public.  The first is a science museum, with fossils and instruments donated by some really amazing people including Lord Kelvin, Charles Darwin and Nikola Tesla.  SO BEAUTIFUL.  There are pictures.  The other was an art museum, which had a rembrandt, a Rodin, tons of Whistler and some stunning renaissance dutch pieces.  We spent WAY too much time there, so we rushed out of Glasgow to get to Loch Lomond.

The Loch is beautiful.  I guess it’s because all glacial valleys necessarily look similar, but this area and this lake really reminds me of Tahoe.  Except there are a LOT more wildflowers here, including Foxglove and a neat orchid called the common spotted orchid that doesn’t look common at all to me.

We skipped dinner and instead decided to go hiking at 9:30pm.  Because you can do that here in the summer.  We traipsed out a path looking for a bridge named Honeymoon Bridge (we felt it was appropriate) but the path was washed out and we were not enjoying the midges.

Let me just devote a paragraph to midges here.

Midges are wee tiny little bugs that swarm in the thousands and bite in the millions.  Or it feels like it. Their bites sting and itch and they LOVE Chris.  Which is in some ways a joy for me because back home, skeeters eat me like candy and leave Chris alone.  However, Chris doesn’t deserve to be bug-nommed on our honeymoon so we’re developing strategies for midgie combat.  It’s war, and war might involve a flamethrower.

Thus far on our honeymoon, we have seen ten million sheep, five million cows, one thousand horses, two clydesdales in clydesdale, and zero highland cows.

ZERO. Highland. Cows.

We hope to rectify this tomorrow.

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