Dumfries and Galloway was a two-fold stop.
First, to meet the incredible Mulhearn’s. My dad has a friend, a very good friend who is from Newcastle Upon Tyne, England. His cousin, Tommy lived in Dumfries and Galloway. I wanted to go there originally because of my ancestor’s connection to Morton Castle. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Morton_Castle.
I arrived at like 6 am!!!. It was early and the car rental place was not open. By the way, they really drive on the left side of the road from the right side of the car!!! Terrified was what I was feeling the first time I took off. Anyhow, I could not get my phone to work, so the nice lady in the station let me call Grace, my dad’s friend’s cousin’s wife, at this point she was my cousin!!! They were the only people in Scotland that I knew.. well, more about that later!
Can you say, Haggis?
I got a hold of Grace and told her I would see her about 5 pm to meet before dinner. After that… it began to lightly snow.. looking for that little video… and for this California Girl… Southern California… Wow.
I rented the car. I cried. I have to tell you I was tired, scared and tired and did I mention scared. Everyone on that road hated me that day and to top it off.. I could not get GPS coverage, PLEASE PLEASE get the GPS portion of the car rental!!!
A day that should have included Sweetheart Abbey a light lunch and great views was a day of OMG I am going to DIE! driving on wayyyyy too many roundabouts!!!! In Long Beach, we have teeny tiny ones in some small neighborhoods, the Traffic Circle, but hell no!!! those roundabouts were not freaking joke!!!!
At the end of my wits and a prayer to the Goddess, I calmed down, closed my eyes and remembered the route to Morton Castle from day after day of memorizing it from Google Maps!.
I found it in 15 mins. I cried again. What a baby. I cried because I was tired and I was wasting my day and cried because I found it!!! Here it is.. my ancestors lived here and that day turned out to be cold but sunny and beautiful.
Well after all of that… I left satisfied until I had to get back into the car. UGGGG. I ended up going heading back to the Train station, the car rental place was right next to it. I found a petrol station, it took me 30 minutes to put gas in.. or petrol… and I fell asleep in the car at a grocery store parking lot…
In between all of that I got lost for about 3 hours. Beautiful countryside, but lost. I went down a one-way street and a nice man helped me get out before I died. Let us just say I was glad to turn the car in and took a taxi to Tommy and Grace’s house.
Tiaraidh an dràsda