The drive from Skye was as good, if not better as the one to it! Driving back through Glen Shiel we snapped more pics and then turned south via the A82. A stop off near Spean Bridge provided a panoramic view of Ben Nevis (tallest mountain in Scotland) and a war memorial devoted to Scotland’s soldiers that have perished in battle supporting her freedoms and helping others secure theirs. The view was amazing and we were lucky enough to time it just right (there was a young lady playing the bagpipes at the base of the statue in memory of the soldiers). Mommy and Gammy were both touched and walked the grounds as I sat with the sleeping kiddos (passed out from the long drive south). Hopping back in the car, we circled Ben Nevis peering up high to the ski resort on top, drove through Fort William and were graced once again with amazing views of mountains, valleys, forest and streams as far as the eye could see. Unfortunately due to time (and not wanting to push it with the kids) we chose the quicker path south and stayed on the A82 all the way past Loch Lomond and into Glasgow. On our next trip to Scotland we hope to travel down the East Coast scenic road.
Checking in to our Marriott hotel in Glasgow and seeing one of my favorite quotes of the journey so far sketched on the bar chalkboard, “Every loaf of bread is a tragic story of grains that could’ve been whisky.”, we decided to set out and enjoy our last night with Gammy. We headed into the Old Town, walked the streets, tried on silly hats and outfits, gave coins to street performers and shopped for whiskey, kilts and anything plaid. Sad to see Gammy go, we opted for one more big night out for dinner. Gammy at this point, tired of the food and traditional Scottish menu, was looking for something different. I think all of us were ready for something a little different for once to be honest. We had a little inside joke going with the kids, because they kept asking for pizza and chicken nuggets. Although the menu was somewhat diverse, most of the trip for dinner had consisted of fish and chips. For the last few days they broke down and were trying anything else, as long as it wasn’t fish and chips. For the last few nights, jokingly I had been saying, “Hey kids! How about fish and chips?!” The response was a slow, loud and in stereo, ”No more fish and chips!” Long story short – it was time for a change. So….we did what we always do in this instance, found a genuine Italian place.
We had a great meal, met folks from Italy, practiced our Italian (while having Italian wine of course) and ate at least one metric ton of pasta and pizza. Tomorrow morning we would drop Gammy off at the Glasgow airport, say goodbye and then head…..well, we really didn’t have a plan after that. ????!?!?!?
This is where things got real interesting!
We had booked hotels and BnBs only for the time Gammy was going to be here with us. Not wanting to lock ourselves in to anything and not knowing what else we would want to see, we left our second week open. We had decided that other than Edinburgh and the castle country of Aberdeenshire, we had really seen everything we wanted to. Inspired by dinner (and perhaps the opening of a second bottle of wine and conversation with our Italian waiters), we decided what about Italy?! Yes, you read that right, Italy. Gammy was looking at us like we were crazy? You’re just going to go to Italy tomorrow. Why not?! We had seen all we wanted to see (for the most part) and were only a hop, skip and a jump and a cheap Ryan Air flight from our eternal land of love. Why not check it out? She laughed and repeated, you guys are crazy.
So we settled up and headed back to the hotel to conduct some research while Gammy packed up. We found some flights (cheap ones too), but the logistics were tough with the time allowed, having us either traveling back down to London or flying in to only Milan (we were hoping to head further south to Pisa or Firenze for Tuscany or even Roma). Well, our dream had been rained on for this day….but….I have a feeling this story isn’t over yet.
As Mylan and I snuggled in bed while the ladies fell asleep, we hatched an alternate plan!
Now to put it into action!