Posts Tagged ‘scotland’

Recently I visited the city of Dundee in Scotland again. And this time I stayed in a hotel called the Malmaison.

Malmaison is a hotel chain in the United Kingdom. The group operates 13 hotels and was founded in 1994. It is named after the Chateau de Malmaison on the outskirts of Paris. Their brand premise is “Hotels that dare to be different”. There are thirteen hotels located in Aberdeen, Belfast, Birmingham, Dundee, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Leeds, Liverpool, London, Manchester, Newcastel upon Tyne, Oxford and Reading. Each hotel has its own mini-site, these can be accessed by the main Malmaison hotel website which is .

What really appealed to me at first was the interior of the hotel. It was very stylish yet different from typical hotels. The main doors had these big horn-like handles which in my opinion suited very well with the overall look of the hotel. The stairway was in dark colors and there was this beautiful huge lamp. Of course there were lifts which were modified so that people with disabilities could easily use them also (for example the lift numbers were written in touch typing). And our room – I loved it. The beds were higher up than usual and on the bed there was this furry topping/cover which was so soft and warm. In the room the furniture was all black (which suited there very well and was very stylish). There was a big flat-screen TV and a small refrigerator full of snacks and drinks (of course you pay extra for that) and then there were two bottles of wine which you could drink if you want (again you pay extra if you want). The bathroom was up to all the standards – it was a big room and there was a shower, not a bath (to my disappointment).  The view from the big window was to the main street and we could see what was going on. It was lovely. The hotel also had a restaurant and a bar. And the hotel was situated exactly in city centre. As for the price… Usually it seems that the room rate for one night is pretty pricey but I had a lucky coincidence – they had a Christmas offer in which the room rate was lower than in the hotel I have stayed previously. That is also something I like about the Malmaison – the make campaigns during which time they lower the prices and that is a good way to attract new customers.  I was very satisfied with Malmaison hotel and would definitely stay there again and it really felt like I was a queen in the queens palace.

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But after staying in Dundee we had to travel to London and stay there for 2 nights. And as we were staying there only for two nights we looked for a cheap hotel because it seemed that it’s not worth paying a lot for just 2 nights. The hotel we stayed in was Fitzroy hotel.  When we first arrived we tried to get into the hotel and it was locked. Then we tried to ring the doorbell. Nothing happened. Then finally a strange looking man in plain clothes (meaning clothes you wear while your home not when you are a hotel staff) came from the underground and asked if we would like to come to the hotel. We said yes and then he said that he would let us in. When he finally opened the door he asked about the reservation and told us to come to the reception. Then we went downstairs to a very small room full of boxes and papers and on a small table there was this old computer. The weird guy typed something fast and made sure we had the reservation in his weird system also and then said that we can make the payment. We payed by credit card and he was puzzled why we are paying with a Swedish bank credit card when we are from Estonia. And then he said that he will give us a room that is on the top floor. It was on the top floor but there was no lift there. We had to carry our luggage to the top floor and he did not help us. And when I finally saw the room I said that I want to move to another hotel. The room was so tiny that two couldn’t turn around there. There was only one bed, the bed linen were clean but not new. The pillows were uncomfortable and the bed was also really uncomfortable. There wasn’t enough room to put your luggage. The TV was very small. The bathroom was horrible – it was cold, in some bits it was dirty and I didn’t want to use it at all. At the very first evening I really thought I had just registered myself into the Bates Motel. At first I really thought I’m going to another hotel but since the money had already been payed we stayed there. And the photos from the hotel website are totally photoshopped. Overall I would say it was a really bad experience and I would not recommend the Fitzroy Hotel to anyone.




It’s been a long time since I last wrote here. And I’m truly sorry about it. Life has been truly hectic and I haven’t found the necessary time to write. But at least now I am again writing. In the beginning of July I went to Scotland again to visit my brother there. And I had a really good time there. That’s why I thought I will bring out some places to definitely visit while in Dundee and Edinburgh, Scotland. There are loads of places to visit and things to do but it’s just a small choice by me. And I also made some observations about the way of living I found to be funny.

  1. Edinburgh Castle – Edinburgh – when you arrive in Edinburgh old town it’s probably the first thing you see because its so big and just catches your eye. And it’s definitely worth a visit for anyone, not just for people who are interested in history, because inside you can see the crown jewels of Scotland, the One O’Clock Gun, Scottish National War Memorial Museum, Royal Palace and just enjoy the magnificent views.
  2. The Edinburgh Dungeons – Edinburgh –  The Dungeons brings together an amazing cast of theatrical actors, special effects, stages, scenes and rides in a truly unique and exciting walkthrough experience that you see, hear, touch, smell and feel. It’s hilarious fun and it’s sometimes a bit scary. I didn’t have the “balls” to visit the dungeons this time but it was something I thought about doing next time I visit Edinburgh 😉
  3. Princess Street Gardens – Edinburgh – just take some time, sit on the bench and look the nature around you and relax. And if you’re lucky one of the many squirrels there might come to you ask for a bite to eat 😉
  4. Royal Mile – Edinburgh – it is in the Old Town, the historic heart of the city, and guards the secrets to Scotland ‘s past. The best way to explore is on foot, although it is steep in parts, but there are also plenty of bus tour options. The Royal Mile, which is actually a little over a mile, boasts Edinburgh Castle at the very top and the Palace Of Holyroodhouse at the bottom.
  5. Scotch Whiskey Experience – Edinburgh – the hour-long tour remains the main attraction. Visitors are guided through a series of displays, exhibitions and finally a theme-park style ride, which together chart the history of whisky production since the 15th century. Scotland’s national drink is shown in all its constituent parts, with the tastes, smells and noises of its production cleverly intertwined in an educational (if light-hearted) sensory journey. If you’re over 18, the charge includes a dram, designed in part to entice drinkers down to the well-stocked bar below the exhibition.
  6. Hard Rock Cafe Edinburgh – Edinburgh – it’s not actually a place to visit, rather just a restaurant to dine in. It has memorabilia of famous rock stars and they play rock music there. Sadly the day I was visiting it they were playing quite old time rock, I would say soft rock music. But I guess this restaurant chain is not meant to be for hard rock fans, even though the name says so. But the service was impeccable and very friendly. Only the prices are not very cheap. So, if you just want to eat something and not to pay a very high price for it then it’s not the place for you. But if you want to go out, relax, enjoy a different atmosphere then it’s definitely a place for you. I had mixed feeling about the place. I was satisfied with the food/drinks and the service and yet the place wasn’t exactly what I was hoping for. The music and atmosphere was all too, how shall I put it, “mainstream”??? for me. I thought it would be hard rock cafe/pub but it was really like a family-oriented-come-all-restaurant. When I asked about the waitress about the directions where to find some cool rock/metal shops in Edinburgh she looked at me asked if I was looking for rock (stone) gift shops. I felt like I didn’t fit in there at all.
  7. Discovery Point – Dundee – at Discovery Point you can check out the ship what Robert Falcon Scott used to travel to Antarctica with. A trip to Discovery Point is an adventure in its own right as audiovisual shows, computer-based multimedia and displays of the actual artefacts of the crew transport you to Antarctica. A great gift shop is also there.
  8. The McManus Gallery – Dundee – contemporary art museum, very much worth a visit.
  9. Broughty Castle – Dundee – it’s an historic castle in Broughty Ferry. It was completed around 1495, although the site was earlier fortified in 1454 when George Douglas, 4th Earl of Angus received permission to build on the site. The museum contains fascinating displays on the life and times of Broughty Ferry, its people, the local environment and the wildlife. And it as magnificent views. And it is said there that with very clear day one can spot bottle nose dolphins there. I went there and unfortunately I didn’t notice any dolphins swimming around there. Sadly. I would have loved seeing one 🙂
  10.  HM Frigate Unicorn – Dundee – HMS UNICORN, of 46 guns, was built as a sailing frigate for the Royal Navy in Chatham dockyard and she was launched in 1824. Unicorn is now preserved as a historic ship and visitor attraction.  She is one of the six oldest ships in the world, is Scotland’s only preserved warship and is the most completely original ship in the entire world to have survived from the golden age of sail. It is definitely interesting to see it and worth a visit. Plus the scenery there is again very beautiful.
  11. Dundee Science Centre – Dundee – it is the only UK science centre based on the five senses. It brings science to life in dozens of imaginative ways. Especially interesting was the robots part. I loved visiting it. Again, worth a visit.
  12. Howff – Dundee  – Dundee’s 300-year-old graveyard used to be a garden in Grayfriars monastery, which was a gift to the town by Mary Stuart. Up until 1778 the Howff was the meeting place for the town’s nine craft guilds and the tradesmen’s marks and symbols can be seen on many of the gravestones. Interesting place to visit.
  13. Verdant Works – Dundee – Verdant Works is a jute textile museum and is a tale of two cities, both of them Dundee. For thousands in the 19th century it was a city of long working hours, poor pay and ill-health. For the privileged few it was a city of opportunity and wealth. At Verdant Works the rattle and roar of the original restored machinery, the juteopolis film show and computer displays transport you back over 100 years to an era when jute was king and Dundee was its realm.
  14. Battlefield Live Dundee – Dundee – this is something I haven’t tried but I think could potentially be interesting. Battlefield LIVE Dundee is Scotlands premier indoor combat simulation experience.  It’s modern laser tag with an environment that makes you believe you truly are  entering a combat zone.
  15. Just walking around in both cities because I have found many interesting places by just walking around.

And now for the observations I made

  • B000UNW8XY._V401595704_ British Faucets – I just don’t understand why they have to make bathroom facets like this. Why can’t the water come from just one place? Why does one side have to give totally hot water and the other side only totally cold water. It’s just silly. You can’t wash your hands there.
  • 5499050801_c7ffaf9190 Pull-cord switches in bathrooms – what is the deal with that? Why can’t there be normal light switches which I can turn on and off. This cord like thing is usually already used and dirty and disgusting to touch. Ours didn’t have that knob in the end that one can use for pulling, it was just the cord. And then the light didn’t turn on right away but about 10-20 seconds later.
  • Using no doorbell – that is something I don’t understand. Again. They just knock on doors. The mailman knocks on the door. But say that you are living on the third or fifth floor of the house and you just don’t hear the knocks on the first floor/ground floor? That’s why door bells were invented and should be used.
  • When trying on clothes in stores you get help from the shop assistant – the assistant immediately asks you how many clothes you want to try on and gives you a number and directs you to the changing room and after you can just return the clothes to the assistant. That is something I found quite interesting and refreshing. Not a bad idea at all.
  • When you want to get onto a bus you need to signal the bus driver by rising a hand or waving and you need to line yourself next the sideway so that the bus driver sees that you want to come onto the bus. I missed the first bus because I did not do so.
  • Pedestrians don’t follow the traffic lights and whenever the cars are not around the just cross the road. At first it seemed strange because here we do follow the traffic lights and can’t just cross the road “just like that” but after awhile I got used to it. The drivers were used to it also. And what’s more important – the drivers had respect for pedestrians!
  • People go to bars even during the day time – I saw people, mostly men, sitting in bars even at 01.00 pm already. And it made me think that don’t they have jobs or what’s going on, why are they in the bar so early? I know that the Scots and English have a great pub culture but I thought that it meant that they go there after work but it seems they go there whenever they have free time. That was interesting to see.
  • And regarding pubs and pub culture. Here when you go to a pub when you eat something the waiter comes to asks what you want and serves you. But there you select your seat, choose your things from the menu and then go to the bar counter and say your order to the bartenders. And go back to your seat and then the bartender comes with your things. But the pubs there are very cosy and people there very friendly.
  • Finally I wanted to say that the people still are very friendly. When looking around in Edinburgh we went in the wrong direction and were just looking at the map. And already a local man approached us and asked if we were lost and gave us the correct directions. Also in the shops, pubs, streets and etc the people were very approachable, friendly, compassionate and nice.

Again I had a great time there, I saw my brother, I saw Dundee and Edinburgh and I saw the Scots. And I’ll be back 😉

I haven’t posted anything in a long time. And the reason is very simple – I haven’t had the time. In the beginning of September I visited my brother in Scotland again. This time I really enjoyed the trip and got to see more of Edinburgh. I just relaxed and had a great time there. But when I got back I suddenly had so much to do – my every day job which in recent months has become more intense and has caused more stress, then my Monday videos and also the promotion for In addition I’ve had some personal problems too. And the culmination point of all this stress and work was when I collapsed in our local supermarket on October 28th.

I have to start by saying that I am not an epileptic. I’ve never had an epileptic seizure in my life. This was the first time. I do have migraine headaches but no seizures have ever come up. On the day I collapsed I was in the supermarket (luckily with my mother) and I was looking at something when all of a sudden I felt really weird, unrealistic, I couldn’t decide if I should put the thing back where it belongs or hold it in my hand. Then I felt really sick, I turned around to tell it to my mother and that’s the last thing I remember. The next I remember is me going to have a CT scan of my head. My mother later explained that I had a seizure and she had called an ambulance and I was taken into emergency room. The following week I all sorts of tests were done including EEG and sleep-EEG. My neurologist said that I had had a tonic-clonic epileptic seizure. The seizures are divided into two phases, the tonic phase and the clonic phase, hence the name of the seizure, though a tonic–clonic seizure will often be preceded by an aura. Aura – the person may feel a sense of strong deja vu, lightheadedness and/or dizziness, unusual (and possibly inappropriate) emotions, intense feelings of discomfort or foreboding, altered vision and hearing. Sometimes, the person will lose complete awareness and start making odd or pointless repetitive movements (such as picking at clothes or lip smacking) towards the end of the aura, at which point the seizure has progressed to become a complex partial seizure. Tonic phase – the person will quickly lose consciousness, and the skeletal muscles will suddenly tense, often causing the extremities to be pulled towards the body or rigidly pushed away from it, which will cause the person to fall if standing. The tonic phase is usually the shortest part of the seizure, usually lasting only a few seconds. The person may also express vocalizations like a loud moan or scream during the tonic stage, due to air forcefully expelled from the lungs. Clonic phase – the person’s muscles will start to contract and relax rapidly, causing convulsions. These may range from exaggerated twitches of the limbs to violent shaking or vibrating of the stiffened extremities. The person may roll and stretch as the seizure spreads. The eyes typically roll back or close and the tongue often suffers bruising sustained by strong jaw contractions. Due to physical and nervous exhaustion, postictal sleep invariably follows a tonic–clonic seizure. Confusion and complete amnesia upon regaining consciousness is usually experienced and slowly wears off as the person becomes gradually aware that a seizure occurred. Sometimes people that experience having a tonic-clonic seizure for the first time become sick, such as experiencing lightheaded feelings, vomiting, nervousness and other non-life-threatening symptoms.

The neurologist said that I may not have epilepsy and may not have another seizure again but then again this seizure happened all of a sudden/out of the blue and said that if certain conditions in my life would be the same as on that day then I will probably will get another seizure. So I guess it means that overall I need to take things easier. I need to do things slower, calm down, reduce the stress factors in my life and not to take everything so seriously and start growing a thicker skin.  Otherwise I would get another seizure and could say like the French singer Dalida in her song “Je suis malade” (“I am sick”).

I’ve been back from Scotland for almost a week now but I haven’t had the time to respond to emails, Youtube comments or just any other such thing. I was exhausted when I got back and mentally I arrived back in Estonia only today which is Saturday. This time being in Scotland wasn’t all fun and games so to say, it was tiring and emotionally hard for me. You can read about my previous trip to Scotland here. So here’s what happened to me in Scotland in the shortest possible version I can write.

Firstly, this time we chose to fly with Ryanair. And I have to admit I had my doubts because I hadn’t flied with cheap airlines before. I’ve always used some other companies but this time I chose Ryanair because it was the only way I could get a direct flight to Edinburgh. And I must say it wasn’t a bad experience at all. We had booked priority boarding which meant we could choose better seats and sit all together. The service was good and we got there on time. The only thing that was a bit weird was that all of us had a headache because of the flying. And not just only flying there but also during flying back to home also. I don’t know what caused it but it was the only negative thing.

When we arrived in Edinburgh we had to take a bus to the city center and then go to the train station to catch a train to Dundee. That all went really smoothly and after 1,5h we arrived in Dundee. For the first couple of days we had booked a hotel to live in because my brother first had to get the keys to his apartment and we had to tidy the apartment and then we could “move in” there. So the hotel we had booked was called Craigtay Hotel and it was located quite far from the city center and the train station. We took a taxi. And I’m glad we did that because the taxi driver was so friendly, welcomed us to Dundee and later when we had a problem with the hotel he came to the rescue. So a big thank you to the Dundee taxi driver who drove the three of us to Cragtay Hotel. When we finally reached the hotel we bumped into our first problem. We had notified the hotel that we will be arriving quite late but when we rang the doorbell nobody answered. Then we rang again and again and then knocked on the door and nothing. Nobody answered. The friendly taxi driver saw it and as I said, came to the rescue. He knew the phone number of the hotel and just called the staff there and notified them that they actually have visitors outside their hotel who would like to get in. Then finally the hotel door opened and we got in.

Getting into this hotel was the first problem but I must admit that the hotel itself was a problem in general. It was one of the worst hotels I’ve been in. It’s location was pretty far from the city center, at a first glance one wouldn’t see that building as a hotel, then there wasn’t an elevator there, only stairs. Then the key of our room was bent and the door didn’t open correctly, the floors were squeaky – every time you walked around the room it made the squeaky sound. The bathroom of the hotel was horrible. And then the breakfast serving. The following morning we had a meeting with the real estate agent through whom we rented my brother’s apartment but the service in the hotel was just so slow that I thought we have to skip breakfast in order not to be late for the meeting. And there weren’t many people there in hotel (the hotel had only like 16 or 17 rooms) and every morning when we were having breakfast there were maybe 2 or 3 people with us there. The food itself was good. But when we thought that the man serving us breakfast that morning was slow we were so wrong. The two following mornings we were serviced by two different women working there and the women were even slower that the man, I thought we would never get our breakfast. And then when we were checking out from the hotel the same woman who was serving us breakfast was in the reception desk and when we gave her the key she started asking money from us. I was surprised and asked for what it was. She said it was the hotel bill. I was stunned because our travel agent had booked the hotel and we had already paid for the hotel so  now it seemed we have to pay for the second time. Luckily some older woman came and explained to the younger woman that the bill has been paid and said to us that everything is ok. I was just speechless. In retrospect I can say that this hotel was exactly like the British comedy “Fawlty Towers” only without Mr.Fawlty. But everything else in the hotel was similar to that TV-show.

But I have to bring out that the letting agency (real estate agency) through which we got the apartment was really professional. My brother rented or as the British say let the apartment through Hamish Robbie Lettings and we got the keys from Mr. Hamish Robbie himself. He was really friendly and a true professional. So this was definitely a positive experience. The apartment at first surprised me a bit because it needed more cleaning and tidying up than I had imagined but after all the cleaning had been done I could say that it’s a nice place located in a nice surrounding. But all the cleaning we did, my God, I think I’ve never done so much cleaning on one day. We started from the kitchen (windows, floors, walls and all other stuff) and ended in the corridor of the whole house. I was drop-dead tired when we finally finished. But the end result wasn’t bad at all 😉

And then another problem came when we went to the bank to set put an account for my brother. I think I’ve never been so pissed about a bank before than I was there. The bank was called Royal Bank Of Scotland. And before I explain what the problem was I must explain how it is in Estonia to get a bank account. In Estonia when you want to open a debit card bank account you go to the bank, take a number, talk to a customer service person and get everything set up. And then the customer service person tells you than within 5 days you can come to bank again to collect your card and you automatically have internet banking. Easy to do. But in Scotland with the Royal Bank of Scotland….. It was just plain bureaucracy. When you went into the bank first you had to stop at the reception desk and had to explain what you want to do there in the bank. Then we were directed to a customer servant and he looked through our tenancy papers and said it wasn’t enough that we had to get some paper from the university to confirm that my brother is a student there and to confirm his Dundee address. He then booked us an appointment with an adviser.  We got the letter from the university and then had the meeting with the adviser. She looked through the papers again, my brother filled out some form and and she went to copy the papers. When she came back she said that my brother can’t open an account because he can’t prove that he lives in his current Dundee address. For evidence we had the tenancy agreement/contract, the first rent paid by cheque  and the university letter confirming him living on his current address. But no, it didn’t suit the Royal Bank Of Scotland. We left there feeling quite hopeless. I was actually pissed off. What the fuck? The bank account was so important to us because all the other contracts (internet, phone etc) depended on my brother having a Scottish bank account. The following morning I marched into the bank and informed some guy in the reception desk that the adviser had made a mistake and the mistake needs to be corrected. The man looked surprised and went looking for the adviser to whom we had a meeting with the previous day. The man then returned with an excuse from the adviser and said that he would deal with us instead. I guess the woman who had advised us the day before got scared of me. Yeah, I’m definitely a person to be afraid of 😉 Anyways, we started to explain everything from the beginning to the man and it turned out that he understood things better since he was himself actually an adviser specially for students who come and want to open an account there. He looked through the papers and said that the tenancy agreement verifies that my brother lives on his current address and everything should be fine. But advised us to go back to the university and let them re-do the letter that confirms that my brother has been accepted because letter started with “To whom it may concern….” but they needed it to be directed to them “To Royal Bank Of Scotland”. Ridiculous but we still did it. And then the man-adviser said that the account would be active in 24h and my brother would receive the debit card via regular mail within 3-5 days. We were happy that finally things were done with the bank. We left Scotland but my brother still hadn’t received his card. It arrived to him finally this week (exactly 5 days later) and at first it wasn’t the card, it was the codes card which one needs to log into their account. The real card arrived a day later. And the internet banking didn’t come right away, like after the account was active. My brother had to register himself online to start the internet banking. And this week when he wanted to do just that it was revealed that he needs some kind of activation code which is coming in another regular mail. So it seems that he still can’t use the bank account correctly and for example can’t transfer money from his Estonian account to his Scottish account which was the primary goal of opening the account in the Scottish bank.  I myself have an account in Estonia in a Swedish bank and as I explained the opening of an account in that bank is very easy. And that bank I’m in, the Scandinavian bank, is one of the safest banks in Europe (excluding Swiss banks). And I’m about 95% sure it’s more safe than the Royal Bank Of Scotland so all the hassle and the bureaucracy  was pointless and just a waste of time. In a long time I haven’t been so pissed about something than I was about this bank. What made me angry was the fact that everything could have been made easier and faster and in the end we had all the right documents with us – the advisers just couldn’t read them right. It was just sick. I really felt that we were being treated as second class citizens and that is something I absolutely cannot tolerate. I guess that’s why I, who normally am the quite one and say to others to calm down, was so “fired up” that I just marched in and demanded my rights. I guess it was rude but I couldn’t see another way. So yeah, my personal experience with the Royal Bank Of Scotland was extremely bad and I really felt like the bank treated us like we were second class citizens. It’s funny – usually banks compete with each other over clients because they want the money coming into their bank but it seems that the Royal Bank of Scotland doesn’t want money 😉

After the “battle” in the bank I was emotionally so drained. I drank a double espresso and I still felt tired. Then there were some minor other problems but they are not worth mentioning here. Then a fun fact when we were buying house hold things – in Scotland it’s forbidden for someone under 21 years of age to buy sharp knives. And when we took a taxi from the apartment to get to the train station the taxi company asked when our train is leaving and where are we going (with the train). I was like wtf? Why is this even important to them?

In the end my brother settled in the apartment nicely and we got some things done but all the things I was hoping to be done during the week I was there couldn’t be made because of the bank. This made the leaving even harder for me. I went along to help him settle and help with all the contracts and documents and almost all of the contracts he has to do by himself because I had to be back in Estonia. As I said I left with a very heavy heart. But it seems that my brother is coping really well and at the moment things are starting to resolve. But since the week in Scotland was exhausting physically and emotionally for me I felt like an even bigger burden had been put on me. Maybe I feel better when I visit my brother again in the beginning of September. And maybe then the “burden” will disappear.

End note: I want to emphasize that the people in Dundee in general were friendly and not everything was bad and negative. And the city itself is still beautiful and worth a visit 😉

Well, it’s been a while since I’ve made a more personal blog post. But this time I want to write on more personal matters. I wrote about my brother’s leaving in this post.  The date of his departure to Scotland has come  – he will leave for Scotland next Saturday. I’m going to help him move there and therefore there will be no “Heavy News” for the week of August 1 and August 8. I feel bad for canceling the news but as I have always emphasized – my family comes first.

For the past year I’ve been living with the idea of my brother moving to another country and now it’s finally here and I can’t believe it’s really happening. At the moment I’ve been occupied with work and preparations for his leave and I am going with him to be there for one week. But when it comes to the moment of me stepping onto an airplane in Scotland and flying back to Estonia – leaving my little brother there all alone…. Then I’ll truly “come undone”. But I guess it’s one of those things that has to happen and has to be lived through.

Lately I’ve been quite busy also. Μy day-job has been demanding and I want to make the news better also. But I guess all the stress and hassle has been taking a toll on my health – about a month ago I was so sick (migraines, eye infection etc). Now I’m taking things bit easier and trying to find some quality time for myself also. What made me really happy in the past few weeks was this – I can work for Μ as marketing and propaganda/media person. I am so happy about it and really motivated to do this job. I love Μetal-Rules and it’s a honor to work for them. And if by any chance EvilG is reading this – thank you so much for accepting me 🙂 It seems that I currently have almost 3 jobs – my “real” day job, my news and also Μ I guess it’s enough for me at the moment 😉

So next Saturday I’m heading off to Scotland, Dundee. And if there any Scottish people watching my news that by chance live in Dundee and see me there or in Edinburgh and recognize me then don’t  be shy – come and say hello 🙂 I’d be happy to meet my viewers in real life also.


Posted: 19. okt. 2010 in Life
Sildid:, , , ,

I am back from Scotland and I loved it there. The nature was overwhelming, the people were so friendly and polite and I had fun. Although I’m not glad about the reason I went there, I am glad that alongside with the main reason I got the opportunity to visit Scotland.

I mostly spent time in Dundee and Edinburgh. I guess Edinburgh as the capital of Scotland is more well-known but Dundee isn’t. So, here is something about Dundee. It’s the fourth largest city in Scotland and it lies on the north bank of the Firth of Tay which feeds into the North Sea. Dundee developed into a “proper” town in Medieval times and expanded rapidly in the 19th century largely due to the jute industry. This along with its other major industries gave Dundee its epithet as the city of “jam, jute and journalism”. Dundee is also called the city of discovery because of its history of scientific activities and of the RSS Discovery, Robert Falcon Scott’s Antarctic exploration vessel, which was built in Dundee and is now berthed  in the city harbor. Dundee has two big universities: the University Of Dundee and the University of Abertay Dundee. Actually rock band Snow Patrol was formed in Dundee while the members of the band attended University of Dundee and Placebo’s singer Brian Moloko grew up in Dundee. It really was a very beautiful city with awesome architecture and breathtaking landscape. And of course the people – so polite, so friendly and so accepting.

Edinburgh was a bit different and of course bigger than Dundee. What I really liked about Edinburgh was that it had so much historical heritage – Edinburgh Castle, Scott Monument, Royal Mile, Royal Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh Vaults and so much more. Edinburgh districts Old Town and New Town are listed as UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Overall speaking the trip was fun and I really enjoyed it. But as always there has to be something bad also. Mainly there were only three things that bothered me.

1. The looooooong flight – since I didn’t get the direct flight to Edinburgh I had to change the flights which was quite tiresome. First I flew from Tallinn to Helsinki, then from Helsinki to Manchester, then from Manchester to Edinburgh and then I had to take a train to get from Edinburgh to Dundee. The route back was pretty much the same. I wouldn’t want fly like this anymore.

2. The flying company basically stole 60 GBP from us. The story was like this: when we did the check-in in Tallinn we had two bags and they could do the check-in only to Manchester because the flight between Manchester-Edinburgh was a domestic flight and we had to re-do the check-in. That was fine with us. When we arrived at Manchester we took our two bags and wanted to the check-in for the next flight. It turned out that Flybe charges a price from your bags and 1 bag=30 GBP. If we had knew that and payed for it online then it would have been 1 bag=10 GBP. But ok, it was our travel agency’s fault. Since we had two bags we decided to reorder the bags so that only one bag would be the one that gets  charged and the other one would remain a handbag that can be taken into the plane with us. We did that and got ready to pay 30GBP for our ONE bag. BUT it turned out that they charged us with 90GBP!!!! Why??? Because they said that we had 2 bags in transfer and now we are adding 1 extra bag. So together it would have been like we had 3 bags. In reality we had only 1. But we could not make it clear to the Flybe company representatives. In fact the man we spoke to was so rude and kept implying like we don’t want to pay for our 3 bags. It’s absolutely absurd!!! WE ONLY HAD ONE BAG! Finally I stopped arguing with that incredibly rude man and we payed 90 GBP. So yeah Flybe stole 60 GBP from us. I definitely don’t advise anyone of using the flight company Flybe.

3. Edinburgh House Hotel in Edinburgh. It was cheap so I didn’t expect anything overly glamorous in there but I did hope that the rooms would have central heating which they didn’t have. The room was so cold that we kept making tea and coffee in order to keep us warm. Even outside was warmer than inside. And then we had to leave early in the morning to catch our flight and wanted to check out then there was nobody at the reception. All of the hotel staff were sleeping and the corridors were dark (it was 6.00 am in the morning). We left our room key onto the reception desk and just left. Not the best of hotels where I’ve been.

But as I said in the beginning. Overall it was a good trip and Scotland really is so beautiful. I’d like to go back there and see not so much of the city life but the country side of Scotland, the mountains or as they say the highlands. Oh, and the funniest thing was that when we were shopping the salesman for some reason thought I was from Spain and said to me “Gracias”. AND it’s not the first time people assume I’m from Spain or Italy. I don’t really get why – yes I have dark hair but I have blue eyes and lighter skin. It’s just weird and puzzling 🙂


I’m finally starting the new band introductions. The new bands will be featured on my Youtube channel under the heading “Shout Out Day”. The first “Shout Out Day” will be on this Wednesday and I will introduce 5 new bands that I have discovered and liked. I’ve also urged people to let me know if they have a band and would also like to be featured on the “Shout Out Day”. I think it’s a good opportunity for new bands to be noticed. At least I hope so.

Next Monday I’m heading off for Scotland and therefore I won’t be able to make new “Shout Out Day” next week. I doubt I have the time to make the news for the following week also because I’ll be away for the whole week. I’m excited to go to Scotland – I’ve always wanted to visit Scotland. But I’m also a bit disturbed about the whole heightened security that is in Europe at the moment. Even the US and Japan warned their people about traveling to Europe because there is a serious terrorist threat. I really hope that nothing happens. Plus – I am not a big fan of flying anyways. Sometimes I wonder – is it really too much to ask for the world not to be planet hell?

BUT – I want to be positive, so – SCOTLAND HERE I COME 😉