So, for those of you don’t already know, the Scottish flag is known as the Saltire and represents the cross of St. Andrew [St Andrew did not feel worthy to die in the same manner as Christ and choose an ‘X’ shaped cross rather than a typical cross].
Legend says that a monk, living in Greece when he had a vision and was instructed by an angel to take the remains of St Andrew and sail away. He did this and was shipwrecked in Scotland. After converting some a local official to Christianity the religion took off and St. Andrew is the patron St of Scotland. That was the abridged version, and here’s a nice little video if you want to hear it again.
Actually, it was a trip that we hadn’t planned on making, but I’m so glad we did.
For starters, our tour guide Peter was great. He kept our whole group laughing all day and actually gave us some great history. Additionally, we made a lunch stop in a town that boasts world famous fish and chips, and only two types of people turn down world famous fish and chips: the health conscious and those with fish allergies. Since I am neither, I indulged, complete with a can of Irn Bru. But the best was still to come.
St. Andrews was lovely, and thankfully so was the weather. Martina and I enjoyed a short stroll along the beach (where they filmed a running sequence for Chariots of Fire) and then we walked along The Old Course (a famous golf course) before exploring the ruins of St. Andrews Castle. The castle itself was neat, but the best part was the mine beneath the castle. Unfortunately Martina couldn’t go down with me so I had to go down by myself – a little scary actually when you consider it’s a deep underground tunnel and a sign says, “enter at your own risk.” Best part of the castle.
To finish up our trip we went to the ruins of St. Andrews Cathedral. Based on the size of the tower and walls it must have been an impressive Cathedral at one time. The surrounding cemetery was nice, and it was especially unique to see headstones with golf clubs on them. There was also a memorial to a famous golfer, Tom Morris Jr.
It was a great adventure up to St. Andrews.