Dear Reader,

This Thursday past, my journey brought me to the city of Glasgow, the largest city in Scotland. Buzzing with fast-paced life, Glasgow has to be one of the most underrated cities in Europe. It doesn’t share the same noble past or historic attraction as its neighbor, Edinburgh, but brings the rehabilitated energy of a place that was once dark and careworn but has turned around to offer bright new adventures.


Traces of Glasgow’s past can still be found among the modern museums and shops, in places like the Willow Tea Rooms, meticulously designed by Charles Rennie Mackintosh in 1903, and still open for the business of college students who wander off the streets for tea and scones.


It seems impossible to arrive in a city without visiting its cathedral. After spending our morning meandering through museums of modern art and architecture, we found ourselves at the Glasgow Cathedral, a haunting Gothic masterpiece in the shadow of the necropolis, the Victorian cemetery on the hill. We spent a good hour in the cathedral and necropolis, intrigued by the dark peace that veiled them. When I say dark I do not mean evil, but rather the mysterious beauty of the unknown that both locations encompassed. The kind of dark that can exist with light.


I had almost forgotten that I had originally intended to study in Glasgow my sophomore year of college; I had been accepted and everything, and then withdrew my commitment for a handful of reasons that are no longer relevant.  It was compelling to walk Glasgow’s streets and wonder how my life in that city might have been, or what I would be doing this summer in lieu of Stirling. I cannot know the answer to either question, and as neither is reality it is of little significance.


There is great wisdom in not being able to know everything, and I am appreciating more and more how I can’t. And while my travels in Scotland may have taken a different direction, I am thankful that I am here now, and that this is the trip that has chosen me.

Love, Rae

12 thoughts on “Glasgow

  1. Still more beauty for us to see. Loved the photos. The stained glass was amazing. Especially like to see your smiling face.
    You have a unique way of observing, processing and then delivering in such a way that all experience what you have observed.
    I am beginning to think I had fallen asleep for 30 years and during that time you turned 50 as your writing is so mature. You have been given a gift that you are using so well.
    Sending you lots of hugs

    1. Thank you, Grandma! It’s alright, I can’t seem to remember the last 30 years either. 😉 I’m glad you see it as using a gift, since that was my intention when starting the blog.

  2. Two great waves of feeling swelled up as your post took us on a stroll through Glasgow. Again I know it from occasional visits 60 years ago when we stayed with a dedicated young Scottish pastor and his wife and two kids who lived in the slums as a member and witness of the Iona Community. It was place on the edge of Hell. The second wave of emotion came to find you walking down the long aisle of the Auld Kirk or the Cathedral, built as a Roman Catholic place of worship and now part of the (Presbyterian) Church of Scotland. You’ve climbed the hill to the place of the dead to look down upon and ponder the living; the darkness and the light. What a journey. Blessings on your pilgrimage. Alexsi

  3. Rae!
    This post is marvelous! The way you describe things makes me feel like I’m really there! I loved the photos and the detailed descriptions. I particularly enjoyed the photo of your group in the distorted glass, and all of you with your cameras. I am so glad you have been getting so much out of your trip! Can’t wait to hear more of your stories! Love you, Rae!
    – Erin

    1. Thanks, Erin! I saw the glass and thought that would make a neat photo, and it’s my favorite from the day too. I thought you being a photographer would like it. 🙂

  4. Hard to believe in three weeks we will be in England, but sadly 400 plus miles from Stirling. Your writing is getting better with each blog and makes me anxious to return to the Celtic world again. I plan on using some of the music you add to your blogs before each of my classes begins next semester. Moonlight Sonata would be great before a quiz — calm the students down (or make them fall asleep).

    1. I am so excited to hear how your trip goes! Yes, don’t make the students fall asleep. You can bring in coffee for them to counteract the calming music. 🙂

  5. Glory to IC XC!
    It’s great to see the pictures with your joyous face illuminating those historic environs! 🙂
    Thanks for the continued narration.
    In XC,
    Your affectionate uncle,

  6. Hi Rae!
    I LOVE all the photos, especially the mirror one with all of you, and the stained glass with IC XC NIKA in it!
    Your writing is wonderful, and I always look forward to new posts.
    Love you Sweetheart!
    ♥ DaD

    1. Thank you, Dad! Yes, the stained glass was amazing. Hard to capture the effect in pictures, but I loved how that one came out.

Leave a Reply