Should I Stay or Should I Go?

I haven’t decided if I am going to fire up the blog again, but I did import my old, old one, the one that existed prior to the existence of

At least now, if I do fire this up again, I will have multiple backups of everything.  I’m sad I lost all my Scotland stuff, but hey, let’s pretend I never left!

Glasgow bound

I haven’t had a chance to get to Glasgow yet, but on Tuesday I will finally get to spend the day there! I have an interview there, so I’m heading down early to wander around a bit, go to my interview, and wander some more before heading back.

I’m excited! It will be cool to be in the city where my family emigrated from! When I was in Montreal I got to see where they landed in Canada, so getting to see where they left from will be nice.

Down to the Nitty Gritty

So. Now we’re all caught up, this is where I show the bloom is off the rose, to some degree.

I am happy, over the moon, and everything is better than I ever imagined it would be. That said it’s also way harder than I imagined. So much depends on having an address, which I don’t have. It’s hard to get anything done, from opening a bank account to getting a driver’s licence. Things I need, and can’t get.

Just trying to navigate the information out there, to get something like my National Insurance Number, is a pain. There’s information for citizens that have lived here forever, and there’s information for immigrants, there isn’t information for citizens who have immigrated, which is what I am. Lather, rinse, repeat for everything you want to find information on.

I’ve been looking for work since I landed here. I have applied to more jobs than I can count. I’ve been invited to a handful of interviews. So far, no job. That’s hard on the ego, for sure. I haven’t had this much trouble finding a job since I entered the job market after high school. I’ve applied for jobs all over the country. It’s not like I’m being picky about where I go, there’s just more people than there are jobs right now.

It’s also hard living in a hostel. I’m lucky that the hostel I’m currently in is quiet right now. It’s their off season. I’ve found a nice routine with the manager, and we’ve become friends. I like the town I’m in, and it’s pretty easy to get into the city if I need to go. But I’m so looking forward to being able to unpack, to have a little place that’s just mine. I’m really looking forward to sending for my cats.

Everyday is hard, and tiring and trying. Despite all of the negative, I am honestly happier than I have ever been in my life. I am so glad I picked up and moved. Best thing I ever could have done.


So now we (finally) get to the part where I am finally in Scotland.

Let’s get caught up to the present, shall we?

I’ve been here awhile now. I’ve been ALL over Scotland. Go open up a map of Scotland. Now, I started in Edinburgh. From there I have been to (in no particular order): Perth, For William, Inverness, Aberdeen, St. Andrews, Leven, Dundee, Glen Coe, Loch Ness, Thruso, Stromness, Kirkwall, Stirling, and Cupar. I think that’s most of the places I’ve been. There may be more. But I’ve managed to see a good chunk of the country.

I still sound Canadian, though I have managed to learn how to say loch correctly, and I know how to pronounce gaelic correctly.

I’m making friends, and I’m looking for work. I’ve had a few interviews but nothing has stuck yet.

I’ve attended a live rugby match (which is a sport I LOVE to watch), I still don’t like football, and I’m slowly learning about cricket (and actually enjoying it).

I can not express enough how much I love this country. I feel more at home here than I have ever felt anywhere else. I am home. I may be essentially homeless (living in a hostel at the moment), and be dirt poor, and I haven’t worked in 8 months, but damn, I am so happy. The happiest I have ever been in my life. I belong here.

I miss my friends and my family. I miss the familiar. I miss really silly things, like Kraft Dinner, Lash Blast mascara from Cover Girl (I have yet to find it, I’m still holding out hope), Crest toothpaste, cornmeal, and rootbeer. But I’m so glad I’m here. I wouldn’t change it for anything. Not a damn thing.

New York, New York

The day I left for New York I called my mother in tears. I’d been traveling for a few weeks already and I was exhausted. I was also about to leave Canada for good. I was really, really leaving. It all kind of hit me at once. It was really hard.

I think I hit a wall by the time I got to New York. I was just so tired, both emotionally and physically. I didn’t have the energy to head out and do much of anything. I went to Central Park and wandered aimlessly, got myself a hot dog and some rosted nuts from a street vender, and just watched the crowds.

A friend of mine that had lived in New York suggested a cute French bistro, The Pink Pony, so I took myself there for dinner. It was wonderful! So wonderful I stopped there for lunch the next day, before catching my flight to Scotland.

After dinner I took myself next door for a drink. I stopped at Katz’s Deli, grabbed a sandwich for later. So yummy! Everytime I think about it, I want a pastrami sandwich. I would kill for one right now. *sigh*

And that was the extent of my New York adventure. I know I should have been doing all sorts of things, but the fact was, I just couldn’t. It was all I could do to leave the hostel.

I was only there for 48 hours, if that. I have no regrets. One day I will go back. It was just a stepping stone. Glad I saw what I did.

La belle province

After a lovely and relaxing trip to Ottawa, it was off to Montreal!

I took the train out, which was a first for me. I’ve never had a chance to take ViaRail before, way too expensive to travel out west, but it was a lovely trip. We passed a lot of farm land. It was nice to sit back and just watch everything pass by.

I had a friend to stay with in Montreal, and she was an amazing guide to the city. Super mega bonus: best bathroom in the world! I could have swam in her bathtub it was so big! I had the longest, hottest bath possible. It was amazing. I still dream about it, especially since it’s the last bath I had.

Aside from the greatest bath ever, I had a fantastic time. We went out for a very lovely meal at a bistro close to her house. The food was great, the atmosphere was great, everything was fantastic!

The next day my friend from Ottawa joined us and off we went to explore the city. I had such a great time. We went to visit the old port, ate bagels, went to a few bars, ate poutine, all the good stuff!

Hello, Bonjour!

From LA I went to Minnesota. I’d love to post some photos of Minnesota, but I didn’t take many. I was there for such a short time, I spent all of it just enjoying it.

Minnesota was my first introduction to WINTER. Oh boy was it cold. So cold in fact, it snowed. It decided to snow the in the night before I was supposed to leave. The whole drive to the airport I felt ill (combine bad anxiety plus car sickness… so fun). I was so worried that my flight was going to be so delayed that I was going to miss my connection in Chicago.

Oh boy, it was the beginning of a long day.

I got to the airport, went to check into my flight, which was delayed, and I would miss my connection, so the lady that was checking me in put me on a direct flight on another airline. THAT flight was delayed. I finally got my flight into Toronto, arrived at the check in counter for WestJet, and tried to check in for my flight much later that night. The girl at the counter offered to put me on an earlier flight and I nearly burst into tears. After being in airports and on airplanes since 8 AM, I was DONE. I got on the earlier flight, made it into Ottawa, and my ride was able to get me early. Thanks to making that flight I was able to attend a Thanksgiving dinner! So unexpected!!

Ottawa was so much fun! I got to visit with one of my favourite girls in the world, as well as see Canada’s capital!

As a good tourist, I made sure to visit such cultural heritage sites such as Filthy McNasty’s.

But I also made sure to tour Parliament Hill. I’m glad I did. It was beautiful. My only regret was not being able to take photos in the library. It was my favourite room in the place.

The trees were changing colours and it was so beautiful to see.

I think I went at the perfect time of year! Ottawa is absolutely worth visiting!