Of course, we aren’t really in the country yet…the city we are staying in tonight, Dundee, is one I have never heard of. Little did I know it is the 4th largest city in the country, with over 170,000 people. I should have guessed that when my GPS listed several Starbucks and McDonald’ses in the city. Not that it matters; we weren’t looking for a countryside accommodation, just somewhere strategic for the night. But I digress.
We were out of our couchsurfing home by 11am (cheers for the stay, Anna) and headed toward the Queen Street train station. It’s an important location because it is next to the cafe which has working wifi, Caffe Nero.
We ended up have some coffee, and have now just about filled up one whole “frequent customer” card. When we go tomorrow, one of them will be free. We stayed for about 4 hours…with some breaks in between. For example, I walked back to the nearby visitor center to get some free regional travel guides that were out of stock a couple days ago. I will post a pic tomorrow to show you what they look like. Around 3pm, we took a taxi to the rental car lot, only to find that a change we supposedly made to our reservation wasn’t actually changed in their system. Part of that was the location of pickup. So a driver took us, for free, to another branch… probably at least 15 minutes away. We walked into the office, gave them our info, and guess what? They didn’t have any record of our changed reservation. They had the original, so no harm done, but it was quite frustrating!
We headed to the car rental earlier than expected, so even with this delay, we were still on the road 30 minutes earlier than we had originally planned. We are in a new (1000 miles) red Kia Cee’d, whatever that name is supposed to mean. Speaking of which, it seems like most on the car models in Europe I can’t even pronounce….they seem like made up words…sounds….rather than regular English words like Trailblazer, Mustang, Charger…. Try Cee’d, Astra, Twizy, Citroen, and Aygo. Pretty quickly we were on the highway, though Kellie came to the rescue several times, warning me I was too close to the left lane lines (driver sits on the right). I was surprised to see that distances are measured in Scotland in miles, speeds in miles per hour. Way to stick it to the English!
Why did we leave earlier than planned? Let this photo be a clue:
Yes, back from Hungary, I have resumed my Costco obsession. Yet, this is not the US, this is Glasgow, Scotland. And if you were wondering, that is me in the black shirt ordering two cheese salads and two jacket potatoes- one with coleslaw (yum!) and one with baked beans (so-so). No, I didn’t order the Aberdeen Angus Cottage Pie. Maybe if we return. We will be going through one more city with a Costco…Aberdeen.
By the way, we looked through, mostly at the food and snacks… I was surprised that they had some foods that were exactly the same. For example, this Costco had the bags of Australian licorice and the little packets of dry mashed potatoes that you mix with water and milk to make mashed potato-ey goodness. We also checked out the alcohol prices…especially because I don’t really know what liquor typically goes for in a normal shop here. If you have the knowledge to compare US to UK, multiply these prices by 1.6 to get dollars.
[disclaimer: These photos of the Glasgow Costco, and its products, are unauthorized for any location other than this webpage. If you think these prices are good, purchase a Costco membership so you can take advantage of them]
We left the store right at closing time, sat in the parking lot eating our food as it started to drizzle, and then left the now mostly-deserted parking lot toward our destination. As we were nearing the exit of the parking lot, Kellie informed me that I had been…uh…driving on the right hand side through the lot. Whoops! Then, seconds later, I turned into the Tesco parking lot…into the one-way exit of the taxi queue. Ok, I got that out of my system. Let’s all have a good laugh. ha ha ha.
On our 80 miles journey to the northeast, we actually drove into the Edinburgh city limits, then headed north over the Firth of Forth. There are two famous bridges but it was grey and dull and no real point taking photos.
Here we are in Dundee. We will get an early-ish start tomorrow with Stirling Castle, St. Andrew’s (where modern golf was pretty much invented…the course dates to earlier than 1574!) and probably lots more photos of beautiful castles, scenery, and adventures.