Re: Destinations

1

Two words for you: "horizontal rain"

I visited Edinburgh in June for a week. Every day, a ton of rain. Those were probably the nicest days of the year, that they shot that footage.

It's a lovely city. Just .... horizontal rain.


Posted by: Chet | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 9:09 AM
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It is a damp but beautiful country, and I'll be crossing the border into it in about five hours or so. Ha!


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 9:11 AM
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Eh, horizontal rain isn't so bad. I didn't live there for all that long (three months) so the actual Scots might well disagree but I found the weather horror stories to be a bit exaggerated. Well, until the wind came in off the North Sea. That really was as awful as it was made out to be.

(Tangentially, I'm going to Scotland in three weeks! I'm really looking forward to seeing it again; it's been a long 12 years since I last visited.)

We honeymooned in the Lake District - I loved it, though November and the north of England isn't exactly a bikini destination.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 9:13 AM
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4

I just watched Under the Skin, the new Jonathan Glazer movie. It was pretty boring, but wow, yes, Scotland is gorgeous.


Posted by: jms | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 9:14 AM
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5

Also, Iceland seemed like a real honeymoon hot spot for a few years, with much the same attractions as Scotland.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 9:16 AM
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4: I quite liked it, although it's harder to watch babies in dire straits than it used to be. Sexy Beast is one of my all time favorite movies.


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 9:27 AM
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7

If anyone fancies a trip to the Small Isles, my friends are trying to crowdfund better accommodation for themselves by offering accommodation to others - http://wondering-wanderers.blogspot.co.uk/2014/04/fancy-this-for-lunch.html Although as far as I can make out, there's about 3 weeks a year when the weather's ok, and it's not midge-infested.

Would love to go back up to the Moray Firth area.

And has your kid seen Martyn Ashton's Road Bike Party videos?


Posted by: asilon | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 9:30 AM
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asilon, Paris-Roubais was shown here on a one-day delay, and it took me days to watch it. Paul Sherwen noticed and called out in the broadcast a Welsh flag on the Arenberg. Was that you?

Also, drawing the same inference I did last week, he mentioned Geraint, which he pronounced to rhyme with "parent." Is that correct?


Posted by: idp | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 9:38 AM
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No, we were up at section 4, nearer Roubaix. The camera jumped past us, from helicopter to bike, as the leaders (Sagan was out ahead at that point) went by. Fantastic atmosphere. C got a good photo of Taylor Phinney - https://twitter.com/TheWorstTrip/status/455829006567628800

Geraint has more of an 'eye' sound in the second syllable than a straight rhyme with parent. And the emphasis is on the second syllable.


Posted by: asilon | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 9:54 AM
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Geraint has more of an 'eye' sound in the second syllable than a straight rhyme with parent. And the emphasis is on the second syllable

Much closer to what I wanted to say, thanks. What does he know, he's a Kenyan, and years of sitting next to Phil Liggett has destroyed his ability to speak English.


Posted by: idp | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 10:04 AM
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Great video. Felt a bit like watching Top Gear, which is almost all about the scenery porn for me.

We did New Zealand for our honeymoon. We (at least I) didn't realize that was A Thing; we had wanted to go there for a decade. The year before, we did Scotland and England and we definitely want to go back to Scotland as soon as possible. Edinburgh was great and I loved Orkney. Agree with 7, the west coast of Moray Firth was beautiful in a way that really works for me.


Posted by: dalriata | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 10:13 AM
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12

This guy has taken some beautiful photos in Scotland.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 10:16 AM
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13

12: Hello, Dali.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 10:18 AM
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14

12: I'll be in my bunk.


Posted by: dalriata | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 10:20 AM
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The Lake District is (was) indeed beautiful as hell. Almost hilariously so, in that it has a centuries-long reputation for being beautiful, and more specifically for people wandering around noticing it is beautiful, and there you are, wandering around, and yup, they're right, it's beautiful.

We honeymooned in Berlin for a month which I wager is not enormously common for people that don't live in Berlin.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 10:31 AM
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Scotland's been on my list of places to go for some time now. It's just a shame that all of the distilleries are basically the equivalent of the Scotland pavilion at Epcot.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 10:50 AM
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Scotland is lovely, yeah. And the summer, if you can catch it, is particularly beautiful. There's a period in April/May/June, when if the weather is nice, it's the best light, anywhere. And everything is green and lush. Not just a bit green, but GREEN.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 12:43 PM
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My parents are going in June, because now that we're all out of the house they can travel. It's some sort of ballads and drinking tour, and they're thrilled!


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 12:46 PM
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19

They'll want to read this first for safety's sake.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 12:52 PM
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20

I love that post. Somehow that relates to this, perhaps because they're both about respecting warnings.

Maybe I am unusually literal, but I would be standing in front of the gates shouting NO. NO! Absolutely NOT!


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 1:25 PM
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21

They'll want to read this first for safety's sake.

That is lovely. Just for the record, however, alternate perspectives are also present in folk culture.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 1:33 PM
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It really does look beautiful, and I've often wanted to go hiking there. However, as a person with a very, very Scottish last name and pretty much no family connection to the place, I am a little afraid of arriving in-country and immediately becoming one of Those Americans--the ones who rampage through shops buying tartan tea cozies and mythologizing their heritage and whatnot.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 1:44 PM
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22 Jockmormon?

(with apologies to ttaM and ajay in advance if that's more of a serious slur than it sounds to these American ears).


Posted by: Barry Freed | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 1:50 PM
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I am a little afraid of arriving in-country and immediately becoming one of Those Americans--the ones who rampage through shops buying tartan tea cozies and mythologizing their heritage and whatnot

You're safe if I am, and I am. I used to have flaming red hair, which got me all kinds of unwanted attention. I'm with the late Hugh Trevor Roper: them tartans is nothing but gang symbols.

You'd probably have had me copying out texts, as in The Red-Headed League, for your nefarious scheme.

Slightly more interesting than my current work.


Posted by: idp | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 2:22 PM
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I have to say the idea of travelling to Scotland or New Zealand on purpose seems quite absurd: not that these aren't beautiful nations, not that tourism isn't an underlying economic driver of national identity, not that etc --- but it still just seems absurd, for why come here (or there) when you could go anywhere?


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 6:17 PM
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26

Like, say, Cleveland!


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 6:18 PM
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I've only been to Cleveland for maybe twelve hours despite living within an easy drive of it for 17 years.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 6:24 PM
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You sure are a dreamy fellow, dear ogged. That made me smile. Yes, Scotland sure is beautiful. If I only had more money! But you know, if you like that kind of thing, maybe something closer to home. Some places in British Columbia seem like that.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 6:27 PM
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why come here (or there) when you could go anywhere?

I like easy questions: those places are beautiful and, for Americans, as exotic as you can get while keeping to first world, english-speaking countries.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 6:30 PM
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mythologizing their heritage

The wife's grandmother had an affecting photo on her wall, taken some time in the mid-19th century in Scotland, of her mother, as an infant, posing with her mom and siblings and her grandmother, who wanted a photo, because the rest of the family was leaving for America, and she knew she'd never see them again.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 6:38 PM
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Also, I think for Americans there's an awareness .. or rather, I should speak for myself rather than speaking in the passive voice: I'm aware of the U.S. as a very young country, and the sheer agedness, the history and longevity, of a place like Scotland touches an area of the soul white Americans aren't often in touch with.

Obviously the American continent is as old as any other, but the architecture, say, is lame.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 6:47 PM
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In the next couple years after a salary bump or two we should be able to travel more and Scotland will be high on the list as I've got an uncle in Livingston and a cousin in Edinburgh.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 6:52 PM
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33

Americans go to New Zealand because it is not a young country?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 7:17 PM
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34

The Shire is very old.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 7:18 PM
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35

I am also a little confused about Scottish architecture tourism but anyhow.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 7:19 PM
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36

I remember a castle that was oldish.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 7:22 PM
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37

I think they have castles and shit.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 7:25 PM
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38

D'oh! pwned.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 7:27 PM
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The castles are still there because nobody has figured how to put one in a deep fryer yet.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 7:32 PM
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It is true, though, that there's plenty of grandeur or grandiosity to be experienced in the North American landscape. You may not be able to roam around in it freely. You may not be able to in Scotland or New Zealand either.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 7:41 PM
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41

You may not be able to roam around in it freely.

Definitely not true out west.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 7:51 PM
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42

And hallelujah for that. When I took a 6-week cross-country trip some years ago, we took along a guide to public lands so that we'd know where we could go, and where we could camp as well.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 8:01 PM
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43

I am a little afraid of arriving in-country and immediately becoming one of Those Americans--the ones who rampage through shops buying tartan tea cozies and mythologizing their heritage and whatnot.

The first time I went to Ireland, it was with my father; and my dad had a decided distaste to showing up as one of those Irish-'American' pseudo-Irish wannabes. Ah no, none of that. We were just a couple of tourists from Canada.

But we went way the hell off the tourist track to visit my dad's good friend Demp/sey in Mitchelstown, Co. Cork. Next thing I knew, I was in a pub in Mitchelstown, being grilled about my religious/devotional practices by Demp/sey's sister-in-law, who reminded me of one of my mother's sisters. All hail-fellow-well-met in a pub, when the pleasant din of drink and conversation was casting its golden glow, but who knew when she might go for the jugular? I was new to Ireland, but she seemed familiar to me, and I knew enough to be wary. "And do you still go to Mass, Mary Catherine Just Plain Jane?" Demp/sey kept calling me "Mary Carmel" all evening, for that was the name of his niece, who played the piano. My first trip to Ireland was a bit of a trip.

I no longer worry about being taken for one of Those Americans. God, who the hell even cares? Life is too damn short.

I love Edinburgh, btw. I lived there for a year, and I used to love crossing Princes St into the Old Town. It is a beautiful city.


Posted by: Just Plain Jane | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 11:10 PM
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Life is too damn short.

Got word today that a friend's son-in-law, father of one year old twins, dropped dead yesterday completely out of the blue.

Hug 'em if you got 'em, friends.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 11:19 PM
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45

Sorry to hear that, Charley.

My mom has been talking recently about going to Ireland with me and my sister sometime. Hopefully being Jewish will keep whatever relatives we find from grilling us about how often we go to Mass, but might prompt other awkward questions.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 04-17-14 11:33 PM
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46

Oh, hey, speaking of destinations: it's Vienna.


Posted by: x.trapnel | Link to this comment | 04-18-14 12:32 AM
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47

Congrats!


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 04-18-14 12:40 AM
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48

The footpaths in the UK are something special, for outdoorsness and history. (I think you can walk on reconstituted parts of the Sweet Track?) Not fundamentally better than through-hiking wilderness trails, but not fundamentally worse, and very different.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 04-18-14 1:11 AM
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Scotland has some very fine architecture! The New Town, the Old Town, Skara Brae, Charles Rennie Mackintosh, the castles, the satanic mills, the holes in the ground, the giant spinning EU depressed-area wheel...


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 04-18-14 1:35 AM
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I'm told the Stone Age village in the Orkneys has the oldest known indoors toilet, which had running water (diverted curtain drainage).


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 04-18-14 3:37 AM
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46: !!! That's a lot of changes but I hope a great opportunity for you as well as her. No chance of your becoming a Vienna cop, I fear.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 04-18-14 3:58 AM
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46 is great news.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 04-18-14 4:17 AM
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Nice!


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 04-18-14 5:01 AM
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Congrats, Trapnel and IF.


Posted by: ydnew | Link to this comment | 04-18-14 5:17 AM
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Scotland has some very fine architecture! The New Town, the Old Town, Skara Brae, Charles Rennie Mackintosh, the castles, the satanic mills, the holes in the ground, the giant spinning EU depressed-area wheel...

And yet you think it "absurd" to travel to Scotland on purpose...?!

Teo, you should go to Ireland, whether by accident or on purpose.

Charley, that is really awful. Wow.


Posted by: Just Plain Jane | Link to this comment | 04-18-14 10:34 PM
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I find it hard to imagine circumstances under which I would go to Ireland accidentally. It's rather far away.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 04-18-14 10:36 PM
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It's rather far away.

It's only about four hours from Newfoundland to Cork, and Newfoundland is (just barely!) part of North America. It's not that far.


Posted by: Just Plain Jane | Link to this comment | 04-18-14 11:31 PM
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Well, yes, but I'm on the other side of North America entirely. (Though also just barely part of it.) Much closer to Siberia than to Newfoundland.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 04-18-14 11:38 PM
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Teo, you're not looking at a Mercator projection, now are you? Everything's close up there.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 04-19-14 12:59 AM
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No, we usually use Alaska Albers up here. Siberia is closer than Newfoundland by any standard.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 04-19-14 1:06 AM
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Have you tried looking out windows facing East?


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 04-19-14 1:14 AM
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Yes, all the time. All I can see is mountains, though.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 04-19-14 2:32 PM
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Are they Newfoundmountains?


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 04-19-14 2:38 PM
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No, I think people have known about them for a while.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 04-19-14 2:39 PM
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64: the real question is: "Is there gold in them thar hills?"


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 04-19-14 4:21 PM
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65 reminds me that if people want to read a SECOND new novel about 19th century gold rush prostitutes, I'm a big fan of Emma Donoghue's Frog Music.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 04-19-14 5:30 PM
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46: sounds exciting!


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 04-19-14 5:32 PM
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65: It's Alaska. Of course there is.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 04-19-14 6:00 PM
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65 reminds me that if people want to read a SECOND new novel about 19th century gold rush prostitutes . . .

This seems like a good opportunity for me to mention that the link in 21 contains several dirty jokes from the 1890s taken from the collection by the anthropologist Vance Randolph Pissing In The Snow.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 04-19-14 6:23 PM
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