Hello from Scotland!

I’m here in this lovely place staying in a castle. It’s like Hogwarts/Downton Abbey and it is amazing! The grounds are beautiful and the view from my window shows a small creak (from the bathrooms I can see a horse pasture and a bridge). It really is amazing, this Palace. The rooms are huge (I have 5 roommates, plus an extra bed) and each bed comes with storage (wardrobe and dresser). Three of my roommates arrived today, the other one will arrive tomorrow.

We had a lot of fun walking around the Palace and seeing all the different rooms behind all the different/hidden doors. It took us awhile to find the kitchen, but we finally did. We also walked around the grounds and across the bridge that can be seen from the bathroom window. It was a little mucky, so we decided to turn back. Thankfully the sun was out today and it wasn’t that cold.

Here are some pictures of the Palace.

WP_20150127_13_37_13_Pro                                                 Dalkeith Palace

WP_20150127_14_55_02_Pro                              Bridge from Palace (picture was taken on the walk)

WP_20150127_10_33_43_Pro                                               View from my window

Dalkeith is amazing too! It takes less than 5 minutes to walk town. The town isn’t that big, but there are so many side streets to explore! The buildings look like they should be from a movie. They’re made from stone and are just amazing. Not something you see in America. Everyone is really friendly and they are willing to help confused Americans like myself with ordering food and telling us what places we should go. The man who drove us from the airport in Edinburgh to Dalkeith pointed out things to us and told us some places to go in Edinburgh, including some tours that we should go on.

Speaking of the airport…the flights were nice. I watched a couple of movies and was able to sleep for a solid half hour! I really can’t sleep in those seats but I thankfully got to sleep a little bit on the flight from Chicago to London. During that flight, we didn’t fill out a landing form on accident and had to fill it out after we got off. Make sure to have your passport, boarding pass, visa/visitor letter, and landing card ready. They check the passport right when we got off and again when we went through customs. We also had to go through security again and with less than an hour layover it was a scary/stressful time. Another girl and I almost missed our flight because of the long line in security. Thankfully one of the British airport officials was able to get us through security faster because we told her that are flight gate was closing at that time. So after we got through security, we rushed through the airport to our gate to find out that are flight time was pushed back for twenty minutes, but they hadn’t updated the departure board yet. So instead of being late for/missing our flight, we actually had to wait. Another thing to be thankful for is that fact that we didn’t have to go through or get stopped by the snow storm that hit the East Coast.

Anyhow, that was my adventure for the 27th. Today, we went to Edinburgh. We basically shopped and just walked around all day. After that, we went to the grocery store and bought a few things for dinner, since we could use the kitchen. We ended up buying chicken. Then played cards, nothing to exciting today, except for riding the bus. Buses run every 15 minutes (except on weekends and after midnight, then its 30 mins or an hour), so you always see buses. It is a little confusing trying to find what bus you want to go on, but with the maps, directions, and the people we asked it wasn’t too difficult. 

Today’s weather was kind of a snowy/rainy day outside. Windy too. Which made it cold. Luckily, it only snowed/rained for 5 minutes and then it was sunny! We also we never outside for when the weather decided to dramatically change into a rainy/snowy day!

Tomorrow is the start of orientation, so we will be meeting everyone and finding out what’s happening. Write more later on!