Where am I?

Oh, yes, that's right.
I'm up very early, so good-bye's are brief.
I'm thinking of hitchhiking back to Bristol, but the road passes through so many cities! And that's very discouraging…

…so much so that I give it up after a few miles of walking and pop back into Edinburgh.

Technically, I'm studying abroad, but my experience is, I think, very different from the other students I pass.

I walk around sight-seeing, briefly, and then miss the bus to London while playing piano for breakfast.

So, I head back to Glasgow and learn that every other bus back to London and the South is full.
So, I tour the Scottish Modern Art Museum and am moved by the odd splashes of colour, regimented lines, and their special exhibit of GLBTA art - all allegedly inspired by the Scotish country-side (and weather?).
I walk through George Square, where the need to memorialise the heroes of the past has forestalled any future memorials for anything.

I'm feeling out of place in the city, when, in the distance, I see something very exciting!
(The Reader is encouraged to imagine my friend Bripi thumping a timpani with every picture.)

Windmills! I love windmills, and they bring a smile to my face. In England, though, the Green movement's divided. Vast, open, windy, un-beautiful places to stuff with windmills simply don't exist here. And, as you can see, they show up from a good distance. Great Britain, though, seems very serious about clean energy, so I suspect there will be more.

And then, I discover the most amazing thing: the Scottish National Piping Museum! Piping, as in bagpiping! Their collection covers pipes, pipers, pipe-makers, notators - the whole gambit. And the sound of pipers practicing (it's also a piping school) accompanies me through the exhibits.
The city seems to be having an identity problem…
Having run out of time for further visits, I stroll about,
before heading to the train.
Which takes me South.
There's a change-over in Carlisle, during which I run out and buy myself supper. Reboarding, I'm seated across from a young American. We talk briefly and he asks me if Alaska is "like everywhere else". "No.", I tell him and start to explain why, but he simply laughs, drowning my explanation with his cynicism. We don't talk, after that.

In Birmingham, I have to run, but manage to tag the bull and make it back to the train.

In Bristol, it's a good night to walk home.

~389 miles, ~2 days
Map of Richard's Scottish Hitching

Check if this is a private message just for Richard:

Matt Orrison - Tuesday, August 11, 2009 at 22:15:07 (PDT)
British windfarms may be impressive, but they cannot compare wit the sheer scale of the ones in the US, for instance one farm in the Mojave desert we passed covers probably 10's of sq miles http://matt.orrison.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2009/08/SDC10088-1024x768.jpg

Mom - Friday, August 14, 2009 at 13:23:52 (PDT)
You definitely do not travel like other students--you can pack in a whole lot more than anyone ever has in a trip!