London and Scotland Day15
HOHO bus, Riverside Museum of Transportation, Cathedral of Glasgow, Scones!, Game Night
After a delicious breakfast with attentive staff at our hotel (the Grand Central), we caught the Hop On Hop Off bus to start a grand tour of Glasgow. We listened to the ongoing commentary that’s keyed to GPS, so points of interest were pointed out. There is only one route and it goes in one direction, so the trip can take awhile, and you have to plan carefully.
Our first stop today was about 15 minutes into the ride at the Riverside Transportation Museum. Like all Glasgow museums, as the announcer says, this one is free!
While we were waiting for it to open, we were entertained by the local bungee jumping club ready to show us their skills. Yikes! We try a lot of things, but that’s not one of them.
This is one of the best museums we have seen, given the subject matter. And it’s really a twofer. More on that in a minute. Trains, buses, bikes, cycles, cars from many different decades, even centuries were on display. We took over 60 pictures, but will share just the best.
Now to the second part— there was a real "Tall Ship"— the Glenlee, moored to the dock behind the museum. We explored it up and down for almost an hour. Those sailors had a rough life!
We reluctantly returned to the bus stop ( bungee jumpers were still going) and traveled through the route. Since we also have it for tomorrow, we skipped the #1 museum since we wanted to get to the famous Glasgow Cathedral. ( Tomorrow is Sunday, and they will be holding services). We had hoped to find a bite to eat before going there so we got off a stop early. Not a good decision. It was a nice walk, but through the huge campus of the University of Strathclyde, miles and miles - or so it seemed, without a restaurant in sight. Hungry and tired, we got to the Cathedral to find it closed for lunch! So we dug in our bags for every bit of cheese, nuts and biscuits we had pilfered from breakfasts and used the time to eat. After all that, even with the extraordinary stained glass windows, we were not as impressed as we were with the likes of St. Giles in Edinburgh. Maybe we’ve become a bit spoiled — it was beautiful nonetheless.
The HOHO bus took us back to Buchanan street, the very popular pedestrian shopping area, where Wendy finally fulfilled the last item on her food bucket list. Jim googled "scones near me" and found The Wild Olive Tree, a restaurant located inside the sanctuary of a church. Soup and scones finished our afternoon off nicely, and this restaurant uses the profits to fund soup kitchens for several areas. If that food is anywhere near as good, people who use their services are lucky indeed!
Our final dinner was arranged at a nearby hotel tonight so the whole group could be together. It was a festive occasion made the more interesting by the excited ( and rowdy - read drunk) fans of the Scottish football team who was playing Ireland, their arch rival. A real rivalry that insured that every local pub was overflowing with fans starting mid afternoon.
We had a lovely dinner, talked about our future travel plans, and thanked Steve and Linda for all the hard work they put into this trip, constantly dealing with the fallout from the Queen’s passing.
Our walk home demonstrated the intensity of the rivalry with the streets now teeming with young people overflowing the pubs. Scotland ultimately won, and the noise didn’t stop until the very wee hours of the morning!