Seven days before all final work was due Megan, Tomas, and I hightailed it to Scotland. It was to be our final excursion of the semester. After what seemed like less than an hour flight, we arrived in Edinburgh. Being late at night, we just headed to our hotel for the night. Much to our surprise, our room was spectacularly modern- a welcome change from Derry. Our building was also right on the water so we had a great view. From what we saw, Scotland looked relatively similar to Ireland, but was much, much colder.
The next morning, we got all bundled up and headed to the train station. Our destination? St. Andrews. Not only would Megan be able to fulfill her parents’ wish of walking on the famous greens of the St. Andrews golf course, but I could see my good friend and fellow Spider, Kate. She has been studying at University of St. Andrews. Needless to say, we were all very excited about the day ahead of us.
The train to St. Andrews passed over some beautiful rivers and scenery. When you are in Europe, it is difficult not to miss something. Everything is intriguing and interesting- the nature, the buildings, the people. I could not get enough of simply looking around. Purely observing my surroundings would have been good enough for me.
Meeting up with my UR friend Kate was uplifting. It was just enough of home to help me to the end of the semester. I had been homesick lately, but seeing her washed those feelings away. After visiting the St. Andrew’s Links Golf Course, Kate showed us around a bit. We visited the ruins of a cathedral and a castle. It is amazing that such sights could not really be seen in America. Here’s a picture of Kate and me:
Back in Edinburgh at night, we happened upon a German food festival near the train station. Spontaneous events such as this have been the highlight of my trip abroad. The next day in the city we followed this trend by wondering aimlessly through the intertwining alleyways and streets of Edinburgh. The easiest way to gain the feel of a city is to just walk around and explore. Our main plan for the day was however to visit Edinburgh Castle.
Finally I fulfilled one of my main goals of going abroad- visiting a castle. Perched atop a hill in the city, the views were remarkable. We were even able to see across the water to St. Andrews where we had been the day before. In the distance, the mountains were covered with snow. We explored the dungeons, the oldest building in Scotland, chambers of Scottish royalty, as well as saw the Crown Jewels. Here’s a picture of the castle:
Our last day in Edinburgh ended with a ghost tour in the crypts underneath the city. On that frightening note, I returned to Derry where all of my final work waited for me. Famous for procrastination, I headed straight to the computer lab to get my work done. After a long week of nonstop work, I had finished and turned in the work for all three of my modules.
For graphic design, I just needed to edit projects created previously in the semester. Finishing up the work for this module took no time at all. Animation and 3D however were the most time consuming. I needed to finish up my dinosaur character for 3D as well as make my robot character walk for Animation. Both proved to be difficult tasks, but here is what I came up with:
Now all that lay ahead of me was my last week here in Derry and my long, long journey home…
Fun Fact #15: The oldest pub in Derry is called the River Inn. It has recently been converted into a much more modern bar.
Fun Fact #16: Irish people call potatoes spuds.