a community serious about adventuring
One of the ongoing annoyances with seat-of-your-pants travel is that you always seem to find out “what you should really do or see is…” after the fact.
“Have you guys been initiated in to Buckfast yet?” asks a friend over Facebook. This isn’t breakfast for a buck, but a terrible tasting Socttish tradition and very inexpensive tonic wine. “You’ll hate it (first sip), then love it (second glass), then hate it (next morning), then want some more (later in the day)” they rave. It’s a must so we’ve been told, and we coulda, woulda, shoulda if we had only known a few days previous.
Interesting info on Buckfast (May, 2010). “Scottish Labour wants a legal limit on the caffeine content of alcoholic drinks which would effectively ban the tonic wine Buckfast. The party hopes to amend the forthcoming alcohol bill to stop drinks firms using more than 150 milligrammes of caffeine per litre of alcohol. Buckfast currently contains two-and-a-half times that amount”.
Returning to England after visiting Scotland, we were advised that we shoulda flown into the Highlands (Inverness or Aberdeen) then trained/bused to Edinburgh, skipping Glasgow altogether. We shoulda purchased a cheap return flight to Glasgow, bused to Edinburgh (10 minutes longer than the train and half the price) then bused back to Glasgow. But, in complete honesty, it was quite nice to compare the two most commonly recognized Scottish cities. We completely blipped on returning home from Glasgow, however.
Make sure you ask about return tickets when you travel by train. It is some of the best advice we’ve received in the UK. This fact alone can save you money. This is where we made the costly boo-boo. We went and purchased that return train ticket from Gatwick airport to Reading (good for 28 days and cost us £45 for both of us, total. A one way ticket to Gatwick is £19.20 each or £38.40 each with a return ticket) not realizing that our return flight from Glasgow didn’t fly into Gatwick airport, it was Heathrow. The problem with landing at Heathrow is taking a train out of the airport. There is only an express train that takes you to London Paddington only and then from there you catch your connecting train. So we forked out £23 each for this 10 minute train alone. Once in Paddington (the epicenter of all training mayhem) we caught a train to Reading, another £8 each. Travellers unfamiliar with London Heathrow wouldn’t know that they could have spent as little as £5 to ride coach to Paddington station instead.
We’re going to see if we can be refunded for our unused return ticket.