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Bothwell Dreams

As soon as we got to the car at the Glasgow airport, we were off and running. Both of us knew that nobody in the world knew either of us better than one another, and yet we sat like perfect strangers from time to time, not sure of what to say or do. We had dated in the conventional Victorian standard, where even holding hands wasn't allowed. We had no choice but to get to know one another through long talks and shared stories - and yet we sat side by side feeling like strangers who had known one another their entire lives. It was a bizarre feeling.

Before long we got right past that bizarre feeling and straight into the dream state that we remain in even today. We were so accustomed to seeing one another on the other side of the glass that I couldn't help but feeling like Alice in Wonderland. I had somehow managed to step through the glass and into the picture that had been displayed before me for so long. I was standing in a dream and, ruled by kings and queens with knights watching over the land. I stood there in a land of castles and crowns, beside myself with the feeling of being in a make-believe place. Occasionally he caught me looking at him and I shrugged it off as though I was just happy to be there. Really, I was still in disbelief. I really had walked right through a computer screen into another world. It was as if the plane wasn't ever needed, just the desire to be there.

I had always been obsessed with history and castles, so that very first day he took me to a beautiful ruin of a castle in the nearby town of Bothwell. The entire place took my breath away and I instantly fell in love with the history and grandeur of it all. Had the castle been finished as it had originally been planned, it would have been one of the premiere castles of Europe in it's day, in the 1200's. Without a doubt it would have been the most spectacular castle in all of Scotland. The red stone reflected light as brilliant as the deep, rich clay of the Oklahoma soil. Much of the castle was never completed.

As Robert and I walked from one corner to the other, around the perieter and back inside, I took photo after photo of everything I saw. There was something missing though. It was the first day I had ever known Robert face to face. I wanted a photo so that I would never forget that moment. I set my camera on a wall of the castle, set the timer, and ran to join Robert where I had posed him to stand. The resulting photo has been a long standing favorite of mine ever since.

On the way back from the Medieval castle, we drove around Strathclyde Loch where Robert was able to point out some old Roman baths. They were built in 149 AD, during the time Roman's were trying to take over England and Scotland in one of their final atempts to rule the world. The Romans, I later found out through a show on National Geographic, ended up becoming more of the society than ruling over it. The Scots turned out to be too much for the Roman's to handle, and Hadrian's Wall was built to wall off the people of Scotland from those in England. Leave it to the Scots to makes waves in the face of invasion.

It was still only the first morning I had ever been in Scotland, and was already shaping up to be an adventure I would never forget. That evening, things only got better. That evening, unexpectedly, I got to meet the family.


(Some of the photos I took that day)

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