What has been going on for me with the work side of things? A lot actually.
This last weekend (June 21-22) was amazing mostly because of my friend Lins and her husband Richard! Anyways after the Royal Highland Show on Friday, I grabbed a quick bite to eat along the Royal Mile and a beverage for a congratulatory week 4 and RHS in the books. I soon made my way home around 9 p.m. that evening and passed out!
Saturday Lins came into town to pick me up. We were soon off to her house out in the countryside in Haddington. I love where they live. Their farm cottage is on a larger farm estate complete with a nice garden and fields swarming with rabbits. I loved on their yellow lab for a while before we were off to the BEACH!
The views were to die for as you can see from the photos in this post. It was a bit of a walk through the marsh and over the sand dunes, but once I could hear and smell the sea I was absolute heaven. I love the SOUTHLAND more than anyone especially Arkansas, but I do think I need to look into finding myself in a southern non-landlocked state. I love the beach, the atmosphere and everything that comes with it.
The water was pretty chilly though. Some kids were splashing around, and I even saw a van with a logo on it about surfing. We all know when you’re a kid though you have no senses whatsoever especially about water. If it is available you are more than likely in it, no matter the temperature. I had the DSLR and iPhone so I used both to snap images of the beach, water and their pup Duke. I could’ve stayed there all day!
We were soon off to a local lookout point where there is a monument for a local military man. The views were outstanding. You could see from miles around. Edinburgh was instantly visible thanks to Arthur’s Seat. You can often see the clouds hanging over Edinburgh from Haddington anyway. This day is was bright and cheery though. I took some good pictures here too. Sheep were near by, fields all around, and a view to kill. I am thankful they took me here.
By this time, we were famished. We headed back to have a BBQ. Richard willingly put the grill together while Lins and I snacked on Pringles. We had a nice little picnic set up complete with candles, blankets, and cushions. Sadly, it began to sprinkle outside so we had to move our picnic inside. We had chili burgers, salad, and veggie kebabs. YUM! We ended the evening watching Monuments Men and sampling some toffee fudge cake. I highly recommend both.
The next morning we lounged around the house, watched some TV and Richard even cooked us an amazing breakfast. I needed this relaxation. I have never felt more at home away from home than at Lins’.
We headed off to Tantallon Castle. Here is the link. Check it out. Ahh-mazing. It is a ruined castle along the coast. I have seen some pretty sights so far, but I think this one tops them all. This place will take your breath away! A ruined castle, cliffs, water, the Bass Rock in the background, an old WWII lookout nearby…. I was in heaven. We climbed and climbed up the ruined castle where we were actually standing on what were once the walls of the castle. Needless to say I held onto the rope and railing a lot to get up and down the stairs.
We spent a good deal of time at the castle with me walking the grounds and snapping pics that an afternoon tea/coffee stop was in order. We ran into people Lins and Richard knew, and they pointed us in the direction of Steam Punk near town.
Retro, quirky and industrial is how you could describe this place, and I love every inch of it. I even took pictures of the bathroom! I ordered a macchiato, which my friends is not your average everyday Starbucks macchiato. God bless, this was pint sized shot of espresso pretty much. If I am going to be taking a shot of anything, it sure as heck would not be espresso so I kindly returned my shot for a cappuccino.
Along with coffee/tea comes cakes and biscuits (cookies) as I have learned. I ordered a raspberry and white chocolate brownie that was gluten free by the way. Best. dessert. ever. OR since I have been here. Perfect complement to my now cappuccino.
We took the road along the coast back to Edinburgh. I loved going this way. I was able to see multitudes of golf courses, old WWII tank barricades on the beach, old towns and the sea. It was a nice, calming way to end the weekend and get ready for the work week. I was soon back at my flat getting ready for the busy weekend ahead, but I sure did have a weekend to remember.
I had a smile on my face for quite a while after this past weekend, and I am so thankful for Lins and Richard having me over and toting me all around to see the beautiful sights! We have a few more things planned while I am here, and I cannot wait to go on more adventures with them both!
Here is what happened in WEEK 4 of my internship here at SRUC. I cannot even begin to believe 4 weeks have already flown by. I did a pretty thorough review of my week’s activities prior to the Highland Show last week so this post will focus on the Royal Highland Show. Yippee!
As I look back through my iPhone photos, I am finding how far behind I am with blog posts! Last week and this weekend was a blur. This post will be about my adventures over the weekend of June 14 to 15 with more work-related posts and this weekend’s adventures coming soon.
My last two weeks as communications intern have been great. I have completed a numerous amount of projects to assist the communications unit.
I then caught up with education leaders/tutors asking for outstanding students to highlight with a press release prior to graduation. I continued work on an earlier graduating senior story to wrap it up. I was given a lead about a consultant (similar to an extension educator in the States) who recently became a world record holder in double trap shooting. I followed the lead, conducted the interview, and you can read the finished product here.
Aside from working five days a week, I am trying to venture out and explore the city. The first day I got here I hit the ground running with a student here at SRUC. The next day I ventured out and about to get groceries and the essentials, but my first real weekend was an adventure.
I sadly have spent the last 48 hours being sicker than a dog. I think the exposure to rain and cold all day at Scotsheep this last Wednesday did me in. I have done nothing but sleep and feel awful so as my fever breaks I plan to focus these next two blog posts on what I have done both at work and outside of work. This post will focus on what I have done at my internship thus far!
Early last week I got settled into my workspace for the next 10 weeks, which feels like forever but it is flying by. I was able to meet everyone in the communications unit too. Jane, Lins, the Sarahs, Andrew, Ken, and everyone else were all very welcoming. I hit the ground running sending out emails to professors/academic counselors asking for graduating seniors with a unique background or interesting story we could highlight. I also interviewed Francoise Wemelsfelder about her trip to the US. She was asked by a graduate student organization to be the distinguished Storer lecturer. You can read the story here.
I also spent some time with Sarah M., Lins, and Andrew learning what they do with social media, web, and graphic design work. I also attended the launch of the new Farming for a Better Climate focus farms at one of SRUC’s research farms at Easter Howgate, and then I was off to Gardening Scotland with Sarah M. on Friday to do some interviews and get some photos.
Monday of this week (June 2) was the launch of Rural Scotland in Focus. A biannual research report that focuses on the needs/issues of rural Scotland. I attended the launch, helped with setup, and took notes to write this story here for SRUC news. I also finally landed an interview with a graduating senior and began writing a story about her and her experiences while a student at SRUC.
Wednesday I went to Scotsheep hoping for better weather. The fog was heavy and the rain was pouring down all day. I did enjoy seeing the different breeds of sheep, booths, and people. It was very comparable to a beef expo in my mind. It was fun even though it led to my weekend demise. Thursday and Friday went by fast with doing a bunch of different things like attending a social media workshop with Sarah or sitting in on a meeting with Lins and a client.
A week and a day. That is how long I have been in Scotland right now. The time has flown by, which I think I will still say once this 10 weeks has finally come to an end. So first things first… I started off my journey arriving very early into Edinburgh airport. After getting settled into my flat at the University of Edinburgh’s international dorms, I was greeted by Marcus, a student who is traveling to Arkansas to do work with researchers in July. He took me around the city for a great lunch (see below), helped me with landmarks/getting around, purchased my bus pass and got a new SIM card for my phone. Yippee, a few big things marked off my list.
Monday was my first day on the job. I jumped right into the morning meeting with everyone and finally got a chance to meet all of the staff individually. My week was full of emails, a news story for SRUC news, spending time with the social media, graphics, web personnel, research farm visit, and Gardening Scotland show on Friday. The photos below are show gardens from the gardening show with one at the beef/pig/sheep research facility at Easter Howgate. It was a great week where I was able to get acquainted with the staff, who are all fabulous by the way especially the great group of girls in my office who made me feel at home. I wouldn’t have survived without them! Check out Scotland’s Rural College’s (SRUC) website here, which is where I am working this summer in their communications unit.
I also tried some great food this week and visited some amazing places. I ate at the Olive Tree Cafe, Holyrood 9A, Wings Edinburgh, and visited the Edinburgh Zoo. I love zoos, and those were just a few of the places! See the photos below for all of the yummy goodness. Zoo photos to come in a separate post.
One thing that keeps coming to my mind is how we, as Americans and those who do not live in a city like myself, take transportation for granted. I am so used to just getting in my Jeep and taking off to wherever I need to go. I normally don’t think of just buying a few groceries because you have to lug them all the way home, but now I do. You also don’t see the gas guzzling SUVs here, but rather quite smaller cars and an increased emphasis on recycling, green house gases and reducing your overall carbon footprint.
This week I have walked, navigated the vast bus and tram systems as well as been lucky enough to catch rides with coworkers. The transportation and getting around this city was overwhelming and intimidating. I was in a new place with new people, but I was lucky enough that minus certain brogues everyone speaks English.
Another thing I can say is that if I would have came to Edinburgh 10 years ago, I would have been even more stressed. The technology on my iPhone has made it possible for me to navigate around the city finding places I want to see, where to eat and how to ultimately find my way home. I have seen so many places because of the maps app on my phone and the app for the bus system.
Up tomorrow is the Rural Policy Centre’s release of Rural Scotland in Focus and a visit to Scotsheep on Wednesday out of the office. We will see what else I will be doing in the office, seeing on the street’s of Edinburgh and getting into this week. Until next time…
In the past, I have used this blog to serve as a way to share my hobbies of cooking, photography, spending time with my dog and what not.
Since graduating with my master’s degree just a few short Saturdays ago, I hopefully have the time to keep up with posting more than I have been. Grad school and big kid world can be such a drag sometimes. I have numerous Pinterest hits and misses to share along with some gorgeous new photos as well.
For the time being, I am going to use this blog as a way to highlight and record my internship experience. I am currently interning at the Scotland’s Rural College in their communications unit. I’ll be sure to post as much as I can, sharing images and commentary of my experience in the land of the Scots along the way. Until next time..