Hello readers! I just got back from my four day trip to the Isle of Skye! If you've been following my Instagram (@healthyhappyfaithful) then you've seen some of the places I've been. We stayed in Portree, the biggest town in the Isle of Skye (which isn't saying much). We booked our house through Airbnb, which was one of the best decisions we made! The house was super cute and had it's own kitchen we could cook in. It was nice not having to eat out every night (cause dang, restaurants were expensive). I also feel like my friendships with the girls I went with grew tremendously on this trip. Obviously they are the only people you know and are constantly around everyday, so it makes sense.
We arrived late to Portree from Glasgow Wednesday night around 10:30, 11:00pm. We were not expecting the sidewalks to be complete ice. It was hilarious trying to walk to our Airbnb, since it was not in the center of town. It was about a ten minute walk normally, so we made it in about twenty with our cautious walking and giggling. It was so bad I had to hold onto fences beside the sidewalk to stay up right.
The first full day we had in Portree, we made our own breakfast and lunch, then set out to explore the town. Portree consists of pubs, little shops, and restaurants. Unfortunately for us, a few shops and restaurants were closed for the winter season. We knew that not everything would be open for us before we went though, so it was nothing we weren't already expecting. The reason we wanted to go now and not wait for the spring season is because the Isle of Skye gets SUPER busy. Like book every tour you want to do, place you want to eat, and get your housing accommodations six months in advance. We booked everything within the last week and got to see the highlights of Skye in beautiful weather. After exploring the town a little bit, we decided to go on a hiking trail that was in Portree. We didn't rent a car or anything, so we were confined to just stay in Portree. The hike was beautiful though, we trekked towards the top and was able to overlook the entire town and harbor. If some of you guys tuned into my Facebook, you might have saw I went live on Thursday. This is the trail I was showing everyone! Afterwards, we headed back to our house and made dinner and retired for the night.
On Friday we set up a tour with Skye Minibus Tours and explored Northern Skye! Our driver, George, was very friendly and funny! He was an older man who had a ton of experience within the event and hospitality industry, which was super cool to hear about since I am an Event Management major back at Iowa State. George told us all the different folk tales that went with all the different sites we were seeing. I loved hearing about the different movies that have been shot on Skye (Stardust, Transformers three, Harry Potter to name a few). George seemed to know everyone we passed on the road and encountered on the little shops we stopped into along the way. My favorite story George told us was about the Old Man of Storr. I'll give you guys a little context to under how the name came to be.
Giants are mentioned a lot in Scottish folktale regarding the many different shapes and sizes of their mountains and landscapes. The story begins with giants and witches coexisting. The giants would have to watch their steps carefully because they thought if they accidentally stepped on a witch, they would get cast a spell upon. Basically, the giants feared the witches powers. One day, a giant accidentally steps on a witch, but nothing happens. The giants realize that the witches can't hurt them because they are too big for a witches spell. They start not being careful where they step, causing thousands of witches to be demolished by the giants. The witches, growing worried, all gather together in a place they know the giants and step and find them. They decide that they all need to combine their powers and ultimately use all of it to kill the giants. A few witches leave, but a majority stay and help with the plan. Together, they used all their power to cast a spell into the atmosphere, turning all the giants into stone. The landscapes we see today are the result of where the giants landed. The Old Man of Storr is thought to be a giants thumb, with the rest of him buried. Also, the weird/unexplainable things that happen in the world are thought to be the witches who didn't consolidate their power, the ones who left the majority when they were trying to kill the giants. They would still have their powers, causing chaos in the world. These are just folktales though, but they make for an interesting story! Oh and the reason it's called "Old Man of Storr," is because it translates to "Great Man," from Norse since the Vikings named it.
At the end of the night, we went to get some fish and chips (because we were on the coast!) and went for a couple of drinks in different pubs around town. It was fun to relax and try new things! For those who know me, knows I don't super like to go out. BUT I am trying to get out of my comfort zone. It was a fun night, but I was in bed before midnight (haha, I mean, it's a small town with four pubs, what do you want from me?).
Our last day was really just a lazy day, since the weather decided to be awful! It was raining the entire day and was super windy, like hurricane windy. We all kind of did our own thing, but my friend Rachel and I decided to walk around town again and eat lunch at a restaurant. We were going to go on a hike afterwards, but by the time we left the restaurant, the temperature dropped it felt like 10 degrees. We settled on just taking the long way back to our house (which ended up being WAY longer than we anticipated), ending up being soaked head to toe from the rain. We settled into the house, watching Marvel movies for the rest of the night.
Overall the trip was fun and weather treated us well most of the time. Everyday I am here, I am reminded of the beauty of this world God created and am so grateful I have this chance to see his masterpiece. It might sound repetitive and annoying, but I'm used to flat ground and cornfields, so seeing mountains that are undisturbed and Victorian style buildings is so new and absolutely stunning to me. Don't get me wrong, God created Iowa beautiful too, but this is just a whole new level of beauty that I have only seen on the internet. To see it in person is a whole other experience. To think that all of this is absolutely stunning, I can't even imagine what Heaven looks like. I'm sure it's all of this times a zillion plus infinity (haha something WAYY better).
Now I told you all yesterday that I had some exciting news to share. On Friday I received an email from Iowa State's Study Abroad Center. I had applied to be a Social Media Intern for this semester...AND I GOT IT! I figured I already posted on Instagram everyday and I wanted to keep up with my blog, so why not, right? I think that everyone should study abroad at least once while in college, and I just want to share my experiences for anyone who is even thinking about it! With that being said, feel free to share my blog on other platforms, like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc. I want as many people to see this as possible! Until next Sunday, enjoy these pictures from my time in Skye!