Dad used to listen to a radio program on the way home from a long day of work on the ranch in Idaho. It was called “Thistle and Shamrock” and this is where we discovered Enya and Celtic music. I loved sitting in our pickup driving down the gravel road from our ranch to our house, and for a good 35-40 minutes, I got to dream of faraway magical lands.
Something attracted me to the UK even at an early age. For a 7th grade writing assignment, I’d already made up my mind that I was going to marry an Irishman and move to Ireland. I knew my ancestry was Scottish, Irish, and English mostly, and I grabbed ahold of that heritage somewhere in my little overly-romantic heart.
All my favorite books were written by Brits; all my favorite movies were, too.
So, by the time I graduated college, I had a post-it note on my computer that said “Ireland 2008” on it and 2008 came and went. No trip.
I started researching more about Scotland, and then of course came “Skyfall” and I had never seen anything like the Highlands. So, of course, I fell down a rabbit hole with Scotland.
Finally my boyfriend and I made plans to stop talking about it and buy the damn tickets. The fall of 2016 was scheduled as a month of traveling Iceland, London, Scotland, Ireland, and Northern Ireland.
Scotland stole my heart and I’m not sure I’ll ever recover.
When I first started writing this entry, we were awaiting our 3rd trip to Scotland. Now, I’m working on our 4th trip for the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. We’ve targeted UK film festivals in hopes to meet filmmakers there for our future projects. We didn’t think we’d get accepted into Fringe, but we did. So, now I’m feeling pulled to get there no matter the cost.
Many scratch their heads as to why we’d go back to the same country more than once and I scratch my head back as to why we wouldn’t.
Have you ever felt homesick for a country that isn’t your own? I love America, I’m grateful for America, and yet I also feel myself pulled away from America.
We have a beautiful house in California that we’ll never sell. It was my dream to live here, too, and 10 years later, it’s a helluva lot hotter and everything is burning up (or being covered in mudslides with our almost once-a-year rain).
And I feel that’s how most people feel: too much of one thing gets tiring for anyone. Scots? They love their sunny days and some can’t understand why I’d be tired of California heat and sunshine (I say some). And here I am: tired of triple digit heat, wildfires, and traffic, so there’s nothing more that I’d love than several months of moody weather and a bit of green.
But I know it’s also the culture and the people that draw us back. I’ve been to a lot of beautiful places in the world. Cool. On to the next. But you Scots reading this: you’re hardy and you’re my type of people.
These are just some deep thoughts by Emily on a Monday night as I search for flights and hotels… after months of manifesting a reason to go back to Scotland asap. That hippy stuff works, guys. You’ve been warned.