10 August 2016

I am currently eating raspberries. Because I love raspberries.

But that’s kind of beside the point.

It’s been a few days since I last blogged, and—not surprisingly—the days have been pretty full with crazy adventures. So…

Recap time!

On Monday we took a full day to go sightseeing as a group, climbing on a tour bus at 8am and not returning to campus until around 5:30pm. Our stops included breakfast, the Falkland Palace in Fife, and the lovely little town of St. Andrews. Between the two latter stops I took over 160 pictures, so I didn’t post all of them. But here are a few highlights:

(Make sure to check out the captions if you have no idea what you’re looking at.)

THAT WAS A REALLY SOUR RASPBERRY!!! GACK!

Everywhere we went on Monday was so very beautiful that I could hardly stand it. I’ll be back, Kingdom of Fife, don’t you worry.

And theeeeeen we got to go watch the Military Tattoo perform, and that was amazing too! I’ll get videos up…sometime before I die? No promises on how soon that’ll be. (The death or the posting. Both.)

On Tuesday (yesterday) I finally got to sleep in and then we headed out for our third performance here in Scotland. It went so so well, and I ended up riding the high of that all day. From our show we scrambled into street clothes and then stuck around the venue to see the next two shows that took place there. Both were fine, but definitely not anywhere on my list of favorite shows I’ve ever seen.

I think the two things that I have struggled most consistently with on this trip are 1. Finding my place in the group and 2. dealing with all of the in-fighting. Yesterday the quarrels between friends got so bad that I skipped out on the last show they were going to see and opted to stay back in my flat instead.

I ended up splitting my time between reading part of a novel, sitting under my desk and letting my frustration seep out from my eyes and track its way down my face, and chatting with my two favorite Emig girls over 14. All in all, it was a pretty spiffy day, but I haven’t quite gotten over the ache of feeling like I don’t belong where I’d like to.

Why is life so dang lonely sometimes?

Today started out rough, riding on the coattails of last night’s heartache, but as the sky darkened with clouds and started to drizzle rain, my spirits perked up and it has turned out to be an extraordinary day.

This afternoon I had the immense pleasure and privilege to dine with a family friend. Delia is 91, and she is one of the most fascinating, genteel women I have ever met. She has so many stories to tell, has seen so much of the world, and she’s just so willing to share it. Three hours flew by, and I was practically floating when I left her house to skip through the rain to the bus stop.

Also, I was that crazy American today: signing and dancing my way down the street with my music turned up too loud in my headphones. Shout-out to my ASL teacher, who I kind of suspect would have joined in (but translated the songs much more eloquently than I was doing on the fly).

I just licked chocolate off of my phone screen. Because chocolate.

My plans for the rest of the evening are pretty straightforward: we perform one last time in venue 45 at 9:45pm, and then we’ll take a deep breath and let this show go.

“The Shadow Box” has been wonderful, but the heavy nature of it has taken its toll on each of us uniquely, and I know we’re all ready to move forward. We talked about having a wake in honor of the patients who finally get to die. I’m down if there’s cake involved.

Edinburgh and Scotland in general continue to tug at my heart, singing some song of the wind and the sea, and I’m dreading leaving in a few days. Until then, though, I’m going to continue to glean every bit of wealth of experience that there is to be had.

I have a random collection of travel quotes saved to my phone that I downloaded for a craft project once upon a time, and I rediscovered this one today:

“Traveling – it leaves you speechless, then turns you into a storyteller.” – Ibn Battuta

– Melissa

And then I didn’t have time to sort through pictures before I had to leave for the performance, so now it’s 2am and I’ve been through all the emotions in the book and I can say that we closed out our Scottish run of “The Shadow Box” on a high note. Now I’m going to attach carefully  selected photos and then I’m going to go to sleep.

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