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Greetings from Scotland! SCOTLAND!!!!!

I figured I'd post an update here, because SCOTLAND!!!!!


I made it. To Scotland. I'm sitting in a bed in Scotland. Using internet from Scotland (when I google something, it automatically goes to google.co.uk. I was way too excited when I noticed that). Listening to the wind. IN SCOTLAND!

So, bit of a health update - I made it through the 2wks of antibiotics, after demanding my doctor switched me from the clarithromycin to something else because yeeeeeeeah I went over my tolerance for the side effects after 3 increasingly awful doses. SO, made it through that, and while I'm not feeling nearly as awful, my poor gut still has a ton of healing to go through. (I made the mistake of eating quite a lot tonight. Including a couple pieces of chocolate. I'm actually tired enough to beat jetlag and go to bed before 4am, but AHAHAHAH yeah, weird refluxy/heartburny feelings mean I'm still up :'D) Fingers crossed the infection is all gone and now I just need to take it easy to let the damage from all the crap my upper GI has been through the past 7months to heal.

But, guess what? My gut gets to figure itself out IN SCOTLAAAAAAAAAND! It took a 10hr flight, a 4hr layover, and a 1.5hr flight to get here, but I made it! (And the flights actually weren't bad. Was able to catch up on some recent movies I'd been wanting to see, and although 10hrs in economy is still 10hrs in economy, it wasn't nearly as bad as it could have been. Also, they had gluten free meals! I mean, I didn't really eat much of it because even before the gluten intolerance thing, I'm paranoid about eating during travel, but still, I loved the thought. British Airways is definitely worth the extra money, if what everyone says about US airlines like United are true. [Which, considering how pretty much EVERYONE says it, it probably IS true.])

ANYHOO, I digress. So right now, I'm staying in a room in someone's flat for the month while I do the whole open a bank account and find my own flat thing. It's in a quiet neighborhood right next to the main road/bus lines, with a shopping center right around the corner and the main bus lines available to take me to the city center and the vet school.

So far, I'm quite loving it! Being surrounded by all the accents is extremely delightful, and I'm totally an obnoxious American getting giggly over fries being called chips, and chips being crisps, and cookies being biscuits. I've found the grocery store to have lots of GF friendly options, including some really tasty looking pre-made meals. (I had one today - it was a sweet potato cottage pie. Especially considering it was microwaved, it was SOOOOOO yummy!) And I even found a GF crepe and juice stand, and I found a fish and chip place that has GF fish and chips, and, wait for it, GF haggis! (And the reviews say they're not just a trendy-GF kind of place, but a place that actually is very coeliac friendly.) I CAN STILL TRY HAGGIS, YOU GUYS. I was so happy when I found that <3

Anyhoo, all these restaurant/food revelations will be tried at a later date, after I get settled and feel like my anxiety levels are low enough to try eating out again. So far, my anxiety hasn't been TOO bad. The first night I was here, I was too exhausted from the travel to do much beyond completely pass out, and then the next day, I went to the bank to schedule an appointment to open an account, and then wandered down to Sainsbury's to get some food. Then the 2nd night, I was up until early morning with anxiety-induced reflux/heartburn/trouble breathing. Managed to fall asleep at some point, was still pretty on edge after waking up, and then had my first proper tear-filled breakdown at the health center where I learned I couldn't get an appointment with a doctor until I either 1) had a permanent address, or 2) had my student ID card (after which the receptionist said I was supposed to bring 3months worth of meds because of this - too bad US health insurance is dumb and would only give me 1 month at a time [though admittedly, I probably should have fought hard with my doctor to get this waived instead of just going "oh well, I'll figure it out when I get there"...]). BUT, to kind of calm down after that, I decided to walk back to the flat instead of busing. And it was BEAUTIFUL. I just LOVE the architecture here - so much prettier to look at than back home in the States! Then last night, I actually was social and met up with a group of vet students at a pub. I left after only a couple hrs because I reached my people limit and actually started to get really panicky/shaky, but everyone was really nice and it was overall a good time, and the walk home in the drizzling rain was really refreshing.

Today, though, for some reason I was feeling kind of...not quite depressed, but just unmotivated to do anything. I can't really look at flats until after I get a bank account (because it's not like I can apply to rent one until I have the money to actually pay them), which isn't going to happen until next week, and I'm not exactly in a hurry to explore the city since it's not like I'm on a time limit to see/do everything (I'm living here for at least 4yrs, not vacationing for a week). So today I just kind of hung around in my room on the computer. I did go to the store again, if only to get me outside, which is better than nothing I suppose, but still. Meh. But hey, at least it's not more overwhelming anxiety, right? (Like I said before, the only reason I'm still up now is because I was stupid and ate a lot this evening. 3am and I'm still waiting for it to digest enough to be able to lie down comfortably. Ugh. I'm really, really sorry, stomach. I'll try to be better in the future...)

SO. Here I am. In Scotland. Skipping off into the world on my own. It's been a bit scary, but still exciting. Now I'm just waiting for the whole bank account and money transfer thing to happen, so living in my own place can happen. I'm sure a lot of my lingering anxiety/fear would if not go away, then lessen considerably once I get more settled, especially living on my own again (the people who live here are nice and quiet, but I still get all tense/twitchy when I hear them wandering the flat). So if that could happen sooner rather than later, whatever benevolent-feeling deities might be listening, that would be great...

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