Tuesday, September 11, 2007

First Things First...

Some pics of Chicago. We had a great weekend of Navy Pier, Ed Debevik’s, and Wii :)
outside our hotel

a view from the giant ferris wheel

Reba came for a visit!

so excited!

the whole fam.

Then we said our goodbyes and took off for Scotland…
We are officially a week into our time in St Andrews and we can’t find anything to not like about life here (aside from maybe the not-so-delicious food and the fact that we think our flat makes Ian dizzy). Our flat turned out to be beautiful and spacious, though it still needs some cleaning. We even have a fold out bed in our couch, so come on over and we’ll take care of you! We are in the process of adding things to our flat because, while it is furnished it’s only bare the minimum, so we’re sprucing it up a bit. It has been interesting to try to find inexpensive items, as well as groceries. We found this one store that I think could get me into trouble called Argos. It’s a catalog store where you go in and peruse this huge catalog and then write down the reference numbers. You take your sheet up to the check out and pay that person, then stand and wait while they go to the back and get what you bought. Genius! And not too expensive. The one thing we always have to remind ourselves though is that we have to carry whatever we buy. We don’t really live too far from anything because this town is just not that big, but if you’ve got armfuls, it can seem like we lives miles away! We have seen some pretty funny cars here as well (smart cars.. I laugh every time), and have a picture of their garages…
not exactly the 2 car garages we're used to!

It’s kind of funny how many things work differently here as well. For example, when you plug something in, you then have to flip a switch to turn the outlet on – I was playing with switches and accidentally turned off our dishwasher mid-cycle – whoops! Food is definitely different… ‘beef burgers’ and pb&j just aren’t the same, not to mention macaroni and cheese. They do have peanut butter, but it’s nowhere near as good as my extra crunchy Jif :). And we found out when I wanted chips with my burger that what I really wanted was crisps. But you know what is really good? Happy hour right across the street – hot drinks for a pound every morning, and Scottish fudge donuts, heart attack in a box, but soooooo good.

Also we have decided to avoid driving at all costs. You can rent cars to go do things, but I’m pretty sure we’d not only get lost, but probably cause all kinds of ‘smashes’. Oh, and all the doors to stores have pull handles even though you’re supposed to push them – I can’t tell you how many times I’ve pulled…

Everyone is super nice as well. We have had people ask us if we need help quite a few times, so I think we have the ‘ummmm, what am I supposed to do now?’ look down pretty well. :) Today we went to the post office to send our application for a Tesco card (like walmart, only much smaller) and I asked a guy if it would need a stamp because I didn’t know what the markings on it meant, and he was just as confused as I was so I decided to just buy a stamp. I had no idea how much they would cost, so I asked a little old lady and she said, “Oh, I’ll just give you one” and proceeded to do so. When I asked again how much they cost she said, “Oh, don’t worry about it.” So I got a free stamp, but still have no idea how much they cost.

And we set up a bank account with Lloyds – so easy! We had heard all these nightmare stories about setting them up, but we had no trouble whatsoever. Now all we have to do is put some money in there – which means I need to find a job!! I have about 4 that I’m going to apply for, so we’ll se what happens.

That’s all for today, we’ll post pics of our flat as soon as we can… in the meantime, enjoy these :)

beautiful view
Ian and the cathedral
Ian thought this sign was funny
ministry of magic anyone?
Location of our evening church service
Patrick Hamilton was martyred in St Andrews, and these stones are a memorial to that.


  1. Hey you guys,
    This is so exciting to get to read all about your great adventure. I'll look forward to keeping in touch. Have a blast.
    Love, Aunt Jean

  2. Do you think they will fine you if you don't catch it immediately as it flies out of your dog as the man on the sign is demonstrating? hmm.... LOL! I'm glad you two are safely over there. =)
    ~ Becky B.