My mum had visited again. This time she brought with her two ex-colleagues from my primary school, basically two of my teachers.
I didn’t let that intimidate me, and Benji and I took them on a trip in a motherfucking beast of a car, Ford Mondeo Titanium X, which turned out to be a piece of shit. Knowing next to bugger all about cars I wonder if this was related partially to the fact that it was a Diesel engine but just the size of the car was an annoyance. All I wanted was a 5-door 5-seater and I was going to get a VW Golf or similar but got upgraded yet again and had the honour of taking this car on its second ever rental (how’s that for pressure?)! It had only done a 100ish miles, it had no scratches and no key!!!
I decided that since the other two visitors hadn’t been anywhere in Scotland I wanted to take mum somewhere she hadn’t been either, for a change, and headed down the M8 straight for Linlithgow palace. This would have been a good move, providing Linlithgow was along the M8 and not the M9. The navigator, who shall not be named but his initials are Benjamin Rosman managed to correct his blunder and took us down a scenic, yet very tiny road across to Linlithgow. At this point I was still pretty freaked out about the car and it wasn’t pretty when we got up the hill to the palace, only to find the entrance blocked by a hearse and having to do a 28-point turn in the narrow sloping street. It also didn’t help that the car has bloody sensors front and back and the motherfuckers start beeping about a meter away from anything. Gah!
We eventually found a pay and display car park next door and spent about an hour and a half in Linlithgow palace, which was a good move as my mum loved it!!! It was a ruin but pretty big and we just wondered around and explored the rooms and towers while drinking coffee.
After Linlithgow we headed for Falkirk wheel, since it was kind of on the way, and found it not working. It was being maintained before the start of the season next week. We had some food though and took a walk up to the Union canal and took a few photos. This was the first wheel visit for Benji. Before we left I made sure I bullied him to yet another slide action. This one was easy as I went first and told him how slooooooooow it was.
After Falkirk we headed straight for St Andrews as we all know how unstable the daylight is at this time of year. I wanted to make it before it gets dark. This is how, finally, after five and a half years of living in Scotland, I finally saw St Andrews. It is a fairly small place and most of it is shopping streets which I’m not terribly interested in. We walked to the castle though, and from there to the ruins of the cathedral and the sun came out to make our photos nice and yellow.
After about an hour and a half I suggested we head off to see a bit of the costal road before it gets dark so we did. We drove to Crail first, and had a look around. We walked to the harbour and found public toilets! This was extremely lucky!
From Crail we drove to Anstruther in search for the best chippie in the country. It was dusky when we got there and we found the restaurant in the harbour. We sat in for dinner and by the time we were done it was completely dark outside. Everyone liked the food though, that was good!
The rest of the trip was marked by darkness, both night-wise and phone-wise. Both of our phones had died and we had to find out way in the tricky road system of the Kingdom of Fife. Somehow we found Kirkcaldy and that was where it all went wrong. Even though we followed the signs for the Forth Road Bridge very carefully they disappeared and we ended up Flying Dutchmaning it around town until eventually we stopped at a petrol station where a kindly BMW driver offered to lead us there. It must have been the first time the guy had a tail (even though I was hooning it as much as my unbalanced car allowed)!
We made it home safe and sound, with no scratches but a barbecued clutch instead (I call it the Linlithgow-Car-Park-Rubbish-Car-Not-Coping-With -Hills-Incident)! Revenge!!! Mwahahahahahaha!