Schottlandreise der 7B 2011

veröffentlicht um 30.03.2012, 18:18 von Georg Haschek   [ aktualisiert: 08.10.2014, 07:06 ]

"You take the High Road and I'll take the Low Road..."

From April 2-9, 2011 the 7B class of BG18, Klostergasse in Vienna travelled to Scotland on a study trip. Since the beginning of the second semester we had been learning about Scotland in English class with Prof. Skopec. We had read many articles and prepared oral reports on a variety of topics covering history, art, literature, alternative energy sources, traditional and modern rock music, and typical Scottish clichés such as tartans and whisky. At the outset of our trip we spent a very full day in Glasgow. Then we were on the road in the Highlands in our "wee" tour bus (a classroom on wheels!) for three days and two nights, staying in youth hostels throughout the week. The last two days were spent in Edinburgh, touring the city on foot. Here are some excerpts from our journals (written chronologically):

"After we had seen most of the sights of Glasgow from our Hop on Hof off bus, we hopped off at the Glasgow School of Art, where we had a private tour. We learned a lot about Charles Rennie Mackintosh, who was a very famous architect and artist. His styles were art nouveau, arts and crafts and art deco. I was really fascinated by how much detail he applied to the design of this building." - Josi

"Our ceilidh at the University of Glasgow was great fun, but I didn't take many photos because I was too busy dancing; so just imagine me dancing and singing Gaelic music... very bad, but on this day I was in a good mood... .The sound of bag-pipes followed me into my dreams. That's how this day ended." - Santiago
 "Busy start to the day at our Glasgow hostel - everyone was trying to assemble all their belongings, eating breakfast and cleaning up at the same time. It was almost a miracle that everyone was on the bus on time, where we got to know our bus driver and guide through the Scottish Highlands, David McCarthy, a really friendly middle-aged man. Then our tour through the Highlands began: a lot of sheep, beautiful countryside, fog, drizzle (typical Scottish weather) and David's stories about ‘Glaswegians' and ‘Edinburghers' and football teams but also about serious things like the ‘Massacre of Glencoe' or ‘lochs', ‘locks' and ‘firths' accompanied us nearly the whole day. Some stops were included, too, for example, at the Green Wellie Shop, Glencoe and Loch Ness, where we took a whole lot of pictures. 
When we came near Inverness the sun decided to shine a bit, while the rain continued. So it was no big surprise when a few minutes later we could spot a rainbow above Loch Ness - still it was really beautiful so we got off the bus and had to take pictures again to capture that moment." - Mara

"This was the morning we first saw David, our bus driver, and his bus. He made the rules in the bus clear to us. Keep it clean! But he is a nice guy and as we left Glasgow he explained some Scots words. For example, the weather this day was very "dreich", which means it is a little bit rainy and foggy. He also told us about the rivalry between Glasgow and Edinburgh, about jokes they make of each other and what they call inhabitants of each city." - Santiago

"After breakfast ... we got to know a very interesting and extraordinary place, the Findhorn Foundation. The people who live there (400-500) just call it ‘The Community'. It almost seems as if it is a little country in itself. The people have their own currency, their own houses, their own energy sources, gardens, food and even ‘religion'. They practise their own ‘we-protect-nature'-lifestyle. A big part of their daily life is meditation. I don't think I could live there for more than two weeks because I'd get bored, but I was impressed by their modern methods of producing, using, reusing and storing energy. Some of those ideas would be pretty useful for us, too.

Our second big stop was at the beach where it was so windy you could hardly walk upright, but the scenery was great. We had two different tours about whales and dolphins. We also saw a short film made by an organisation that wants to protect whales and dolphins. When I asked them they told me they were different from Greenpeace because they were trying to work WITH the government." - Juliane

"Our tour through the distillery started. We learned about how malt whiskies are made and the secrets of what makes the whisky great and famous. Our guide tried to help us understand why The Famous Grouse has been Scotland's favourite whisky for over 25 years.
We also had the possibility to test our sense of smell and taste some whiskies. I don't like whisky very much, but it was a great opportunity to try Scotland's famous whisky. Finally we saw an amazing show on a screen. I was really fascinated, because I've never seen a show like that before". - Alena

"Bye-Bye Inverness and on the road again.... We spent another rainy day in the coach with our bus driver David. Water from the sky and water at the Hermitage (the waterfall). I loved this part of Scotland because it reminded me of films like ‘The Lord of the Rings' and ‘Harry Potter'". - Martin

"I've never been to a waterfall before, so it was an amazing experience. The view and the scenery were breathtaking and this one moment (for me) captured the beauty of Scotland perfectly." - Anna

"I have to say I fell in love with Edinburgh - such a beautiful city! I like the architecture very much and even the colours, although many people say that Edinburgh is "too grey".... We went to "Princes Street Gardens" at the bottom of the hill on which Edinburgh Castle is situated, which had been Nor'Loch until it was drained in the early 19th century. There we saw whole congregations of daffodils. In our free time we visited the "Tartan Weaving Mill and Exhibition", which was of particular interest to me, as I had done my report on kilts and tartans." - Mara

"We didn't spend Thursday evening as usual in the youth hostel, we had an exciting "Murder & Mystery Tour". There are only three words to say about this tour: spooky, exciting and fun. Most of the group couldn't stop laughing for ages. The people in our group were from many different countries (there were even Australians) and the tour showed Edinburgh in an unusual way. We walked through spooky wee streets at 10 o'clock at night, which you don't really do on your own as a tourist. The tour finished at 10:30 and after a final spooky photo we returned to the youth hostel and went to sleep right away after this long day." - Hannah

"In the cold and dark night we took part in a "Witchery Tour", my personal highlight because we got to know the dark side of Edinburgh in its narrow closes in a funny but historical way." - Martin

"I saw more sheep in this one week than I had seen in the previous sixteen years of my life and I love baby sheep.... The pictures of the sights that we had seen in class were impressive, but in reality everything was so much better. The highlight of this trip for me was the view and the wind of the William Wallace Monument. It was a moment that I will remember for years to come." - Sophie