Tuesday, September 23, 2008

...nothing but blue skies

Back to back beautiful days in Glasgow, where the sun is shining and the sky is actually blue. Days like this are almost cruel, because you get in this strange frame of mind of how the city looks on a gorgeous day, and it's just a giant tease. It's just going to make going back to the gray and the rain that much more difficult. But for now, the extended forecast (all five days of it!) are calling for sun and clouds, but no rain!

I went with K (my flatmate) down into the City Centre today to do a bit of shopping (after we both did copious amounts of schoolwork all morning and early afternoon). While we didn't really end up buying anything (except for saline solution at Boots -- so expensive over here!), it was a great day to be out. I went to Buchanan Galleries (primo shopping mall) for the first time, and salivated at all the British stores I now have access to: Next, Top Shop, Miss Selfridges, etc. And then we wimped out a bit on walking back (it's roughly two miles each way, so a four mile round tripper), and took the subway home instead.

Public transportation in this city is quite dreamy in terms of convenience and price (£1.10 per subway trip, and the entire subway grid is a giant loop, so it's impossible to get lost), but it's just so very different from the subway systems I'm used to (SEPTA and Metro, and to a lesser extent, Metro in Montreal, the subway in New York, and the Tube in London). It feels very small, like a train that goes between airport terminals, and is a bit outdated and has a '70s feel to it. But it was efficient and clean (enough), and saved us walking another two miles. And lest it seems that we were total slackers, we hopped off at Hillhead, so we could swing by both Woolworths and Marks & Spencer, which is then another mile walk still back to the flat. Woolworths, for cheapy cutlery; M&S for pre-made dinner food. Their chicken and mushroom risotto is heaven in a microwaveable container.

Tomorrow, I have a busy day of cramming in all the pre-term reading I didn't really do pre-term. So perhaps I'm a slacker after all.

And I took more pictures today. Just like before, clicking yields a much larger image:

I don't know what the curved building on the corner of Sauchiehall St. and the M8 is, but it's pretty. And apparently home to some kind of Mexican restaurant with half price fajitas on Sunday nights. We already marked our calendars; we're all going through a bit of Chipotle-withdrawal.

The M8 is one of the busiest motorways in the UK (think I-95 or I-70 in the States), and also connects Glasgow to Edinburgh. When heading into the City Centre from the West End, you walk across it as you go down Sauchiehall Street. I like standing over big roads, it's a bizarre sense of invincibility!

That curvy building, up close. It's lovely. Though note the Starbucks. You can't escape it.

The Celtic shop.

A look down Sauchiehall Street in City Centre.

A look down Buchanan Street and into the subway station in City Centre.

The Main Building of the university, as seen from the bridge over the River Kelvin and Kelvingrove Park.

Googlemaps now has a feature where it calculates walking distances as well. I should really start to keep proper track of how far I go every day. Or invest in a pedometer.



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