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Letters from Scotland
By Jonathon Farrell

Teens

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Downtown Edinburgh. photo by Jonathon Farrell

Hello!

This week has also been primarily concerned with essays. After last weekend's message when I had taken so much time to celebrate turning 20, we all knew this week would have to be about work. 

But now I have all my essays written, I just need to polish them up and hand them in by Thursday evening. Actually, it will have to be by Thursday morning, as I need to find my way to Aberdeen and catch a plane to Norway by Thursday night! But that will not be a problem - I now feel as though I am back on top of the workload, which is a good feeling. 

And even while I was working away, I still found myself in Edinburgh this week. We went down there on Wednesday afternoon, with the goal of buying Halloween costumes and eating at the Hard Rock Café, neither of which happened. 

I did not find anything for Halloween, though I came very close to ordering a Mountie costume on-line to show off being Canadian! 

We mostly just walked around in downtown Edinburgh, and it was beautiful, and already decorating for Christmas! We have decided that next time we go, potentially this coming Wednesday if I get my essays polished on time, we will have to wear suits so that we will fit in. It was pretty posh! 

Looked around in the big shopping centres, even more glamorous than the Glaswegian one I visited before. Then we had lunch at TGI Friday's, and it was nice to get some food at a higher quality than the John Burnet Hall cafeteria! 

After that, the real adventure began; getting out of the city! We were stuck in the parking lot for a good 45 minutes, because no one would actually move. Eventually everyone started getting out of their cars to investigate, and I couldn't find a source. Then we honked our horn, and everyone in the garage joined us, and we played some songs. Finally, everyone with an SUV (which is very rare here!!) just drove out over the curbs, and they gave up and opened the gates. 

Our GPS machine took us on some crazy routes, down several dead ends, and it took us twice as long to get back to St Andrews as it took to get to Edinburgh. 

The next day I was back at work. Everyone else here started celebrating Halloween on Thursday night, and they are not done yet. But I have been feeling a little bit under the weather, so I am just taking it easy this weekend. 

Did lots of work, and just relaxed, which as you have seen has been a rare pleasure while I have been here! And the coming weeks will have very little of that as well; my next installment will be coming from Norway!

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Downtown Edinburgh decorated for Christmas  

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Jonathon Farrell, son of Geoff and Sandra Farrell of Huron-Kinloss, is studying at the University of St. Andrews in Scotland this school year, through a student exchange program at Queen's University, Kingston, where he is a third-year student.

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Photos of downtown Edinburgh by Jonathon Farrell

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Monday, November 01, 2010