I've been home from my trip to Scotland since June 28th. I've definitely had time to ponder and remember all that happened. Surely, as time marches on, small details forgotten will surface; as I re-read my travel journal, faces will appear on the mind's eye; as I continue to keep in touch with those I met, our relationships will grow until a possible return trip to the lovely land of the Scots.
We had an amazing time. I continually attempt to "keep the flame alive" - spiritually - from all the we experienced in our time there. It's difficult to maintain in this American culture, full of noise and distraction. I've already noticed that I'm reading 2 magazines and 2 books again....all this after watching a movie. Granted, all this media was Christian, but it's overkill at times. A media fast looks inevitable. The great thing in Scotland was that I couldn't use a cellphone. No calls or voicemails for 2 weeks! I also didn't watch TV during that time. It wasn't missed. Some would say that I was "out of touch with reality." I was indeed in a land where the pace is different and we were there for specific purposes, but it was REAL. I suppose the question is: which "reality" is preferable?
Anyway, my main joy upon returning to the States was to rejoin my family. I missed my wife and daughter on this trip. I was blessed with the ability to call them on a calling card quite often, and to use the occasional email/internet connection. I desire to bring them back (plus our new arrival, Henry, who is due on the scene in under 3 months) when God allows in the future.
I made many new friends on the trip. The people were certainly one of the highlights. I loved the accents, all the idiosyncrisies of slang, the slogans of advertising --- the culture in general. It was fascinating. And, of course: the landscape. It's gorgeous. Craggy, cool, wet, green....quaint houses tucked into corners of looming mountains, ocean waters leading into a beach which melts into a crowd of green hills.
I must say, I had wanted to visit the UK since I was in high school. I've only been to a portion of the Kingdom United now, but it was a wonderful preview. I look forward to many more returns.....