I heard Theary talking on the phone in the bathroom: “Hi, I’m Pia” … hmmm what … “could we maybe come a bit later to pick up the car?” Ooooooh, she was calling the car rental. We were supposed to pick up the car by 9 that morning, but she arrived late and after all the commotion of the last days, the last thing I wanted was to wake up early and hurry off. I needed coffee. A strong one! The day didn’t show much promise. It was cold and rainy. Typical June in Scotland, I guess. We decided for a slow start. She went to get breakfast and I packed up all my things. I don’t know why, but I’m not a fan of these breakfasts – well, unless I’m in a B&B. Then obviously I’ll do the breakfast. They are so yummy and the owners usually use only the best ingredients. If you know me, you know that I love coffee and cafes. I especially like the ones with strong character and I knew there was one just around the corner. How could we pass the opportunity? The Black Medicine Coffee did not disappoint. I bought first of many scones, a toast, and a large coffee. So little to make me happy.
Off to get the car. I cannot believe this, but I think we again didn’t take a single photo of the car.
I cannot explain why, but I love driving on the left. It makes so much sense for me. I swear I go to Scotland and I feel like home, and then I sit in a car and I feel better than I do in my own car. Whoever thought that driving on the right make sense is obviously wrong. Pfiiiif.
Rain was coming down strong and our packed schedule involved a boat ride. Who in their right mind would go to the sea in this weather?!
But no, the skipper said that the sea was fine, and that we’ll sail out. Knowing we don’t have too much time, we hurried off to little town Falkland in Fife, which was on our way to Anstruther.
I admit, I’m a huge fan of Outlander – the show and the books. Naturally, I had to find places which were also a part of the series and Kingdom of Fife was one of them. As our time was limited to literally just pass through Fife, we only stopped in Falkland for a few minutes, bought tea and cookies, and enjoyed a sight of Scottish wedding party. A gloomy day, empty streets, and the sound of bagpipes.
Anstruther and Isle of May
Half frozen from the cold, we hurried toward our sea safari in Anstruther. If I ever suggest a sea safari again, God, strike me down. Hahaa!!
We found the place of departure and the weather has gotten a bit better. I started feeling a bit more optimistic. They gave us these heavy orange plastic suits, which were supposed to be waterproof. Well, you know what, they weren’t. Just. Saying. The funniest part of the adventure was right before we kicked off when our skipper said, hey guys, smile for a FB photo. I want to take one now when you’re all still smiling. Ahem, excuse me?!
I learnt quite fast what he meant. The weather turned to a slow drizzle, but in a fast boat, that drizzle felt like thousand little needles. Couple of minutes felt like an hour and I was hoping my stomach wouldn’t give out. Our first stop proved that this crazy adventure was a good decision. Seeing dolphins in their own environment, racing us and giving us a show, was beyond our expectations. I absolutely love seeing the animals in their true environment – happy and free. A couple of pictures and off we went to the Isle of May.
Unfortunately we were too late with the reservation, so I could only book the safari which didn’t offer a docking on the island, but at least our skipper was really nice and would take time explaining and pointing out the birds, seals, and landscape/buildings on it. The sun graced us with its presence and the trip went from terrifying – due to high waves and speed boat – to enjoyable.
Sun didn’t last long though. On our way back we could see the grey curtain. I knew that meant pouring rain. And it was. When we finally finished our little adventure, we were soaking wet. When I sat down on a chair in a Fish and Chips place, it sounded literally as if I sat in a puddle of water. Meh.
The food was traditional fish and chips (mine were scrimps, but that’s details), fried in all it’s glory, but good. And the funniest … the combo was Fish and Chips and a HOT drink. Haha! Only in Scotland…
Exhausted from cold and the safari, we headed on. I really wanted to get to St. Andrews to my favourite cafe in the whole world. Unfortunately Google maps said that the place was closed. That was the low point of this trip so far. We were cold and tired and I was craving a warm scone with marmalade and a huge Americano. There was very little we could do at this point, but find something else. A cafe a couple of streets away had promising reviews so we went for it.
If I say we were disappointed at the sight of it, I am kind. The cafe was the tiniest place you could find and had no toiled, at least we didn’t spot one. It could sit less than 10 people, was beyond cold, but apparently had historic value – Kate broke up with Princ William here – and that was enough to put this cafe on the map of best cafes in Scotland. Returning to the car we stopped to get food and scoooooones in local shop. I know I wrote about the low point before, but true low point came after we got back to the car. The little cafe that I was looking forward to for a YEAR, was not closed at all.
It was too cold at that point for a walk around St. Andrews, but I wanted Theary to at least get a glance of what it offered, so I ignored her saying that she didn’t care about the beech and went for it. I knew she’d love it. Aaaaaaandd she did. I mean, really, who wouldn’t love it?
We went off to our last stop of the day – our little Airbnb in the tiniest village of Kirkmichael.
The day was packed with little challenges and adventures. It set the bar really high for the next days, but you’ll see, the next days also didn’t disappoint.
Until next time, Pia