Scotland Love Affair




Hey, hey, hey APJ!!

What’s up?!It has been such a long time and I have missed you all and all of the chats here. Needless to say, I am thrilled to see APJ up and running again. Truth be told at first I did not know what to do with my free time. I ambitiously thought that I would continue to write during the break and come back with stories to tell and then … life took over. Haha, so much for my goals. Life has been hectic but wonderful and full of surprises. I am going to tell you today about my love affair with Scotland.

Scotland Love Affair

As my husband had a business trip to Hawaii during my son’s spring break, I decided to go to Edinburgh and the Highlands with my son. Of course I have travelled alone with him, but this was our first sightseeing adventure without Dad there to entertain or be an adult conversationalist in the evenings. I could not have been more thrilled with the experience. We put away the iPad and iPhone (couldn’t talk to husband anyway because of the 11 hour time difference) and hit Scotland with loads of energy and excitement.

As my son so eloquently stated on our first day in Edinburgh, Scotland completely surpassed all of our expectations with its beauty, people, history and sites. My son surprised me with his knowledge of some history and when I enquired where he had read that he told me Donald Duck was not as useless as I always claim.

Edinburgh is a city of contrasts with the Old Town and the New Town. The architecture is stunning and the sheer determination of humans to occupy the Castle Rock, where Edinburgh Castle is positioned is unfathomable to my feeble brain. Edinburgh has stolen my heart with its magnificence.

The 19th century Scottish writer Robert Louis Stevenson described Edinburgh so eloquently when he wrote the following in Edinburgh Picturesque Notes. “Into no other city does the sight of the country enter so far, if you do not meet a butterfly, you shall certainly catch a glimpse of far-away trees upon your walk; and the place is full of theatre tricks in the way of scenery. You peep under an arch, you descend stairs that look as if they would land you in a cellar, you turn to the back-window of a grimy tenement in a lane: -and behold! You are face-to-face with distant and bright prospects. You turn a corner, and there is the sun going down into the Highland hills. You look down an alley, and see ships tacking for the Baltic.”

Our tour of the Highlands was a highlight on this trip and has ensured that we will return next year to further discover what the Highlands has to offer. As a child I believed in Nessie the Famed Loch Ness Monster. My son is not quite the believer I was but he had a wonderful conversation with one of the crew on our cruise of the Loch. Maybe one day he will believe. Ben Nevis was clearly visible on a partly cloudy day and the air was so fresh and clean that it reminded us of Austria. But our absolute favorite part of the Highlands was Glencoe, the famous glen surrounded by snow capped mountains, waterfalls, lush greenery and clean air. We could have spent hours leisurely walking around and discovering the wilderness there. We spotted a herd of red deer grazing which elicited squeals of joy from both of us.

Scotland is fantastic and I will go back next spring break with my son. We plan on exploring the Highlands a bit more. Perhaps The Isle of Skye and the surrounding area.

I was monogamous in my perfume choice for the entirety of the trip as well. This past winter I fell in love with Frederic Malle’s Dries van Noten and it was a perfect choice for the trip. Due to the chilly air I needed something cozy and warm. The opening is a tad bit harsh but Dries van Noten quickly dries down to a soft vanilla, tonka bean, sandalwood, woody dream. I am not a light sprayer and the more I spray of Dries the better my experience. It melds beautifully into my skin creating this wonderful aura. I usually stick to one perfume if I am traveling to an unknown destination, I don’t want any challenges to my olfactory senses when I am trying to focus on the new destination. If it is a family vacation I tend to bring samples or decants so that I can vary things up a bit.

How about you? Do you travel with perfume?

Please tell me what you have all been up to. Any trips? Any new perfumes?


Sandra xoxo

(All photos taken by me.)

23 thoughts on “Scotland Love Affair

  1. Isn’t Scotland beautiful! I was there two years ago with a friend who had never been abroad before. I usually travel with samples and decants to cover all weather and moods.


  2. beautiful photos! I have been interested in Edinburgh since becoming enamored with the novelist Alexander McCall Smith who makes the city sound like heaven.

    I haven’t been on a real vacation since 1997 before my first child was born. But I did do loads of traveling before that and yes, always brought perfume with me…back in the day there were no decants so it was usually one or two bottles…and I always bought a bottle of something to commemorate the trip.


    • Scotland has been home to many great authors! I hope you get to go on a real vacation soon Brigitte. I love it that you sometimes bought a commemorative bottle! Sandra xo


  3. Oh! you were in my home town. Even after living here for 12 years, it still stops me in my tracks with its loveliness. I am so glad you had a wonderful trip here. Haste ye back!

    (p.s. where you were standing to take that second shot of the castle… you were in front of the best ice cream and gelato shop in Edinburgh. A tip for next time, in case you missed out this time!


    • I envy you Crikey. I could easily live in Edinburgh. We saw the ice cream shop but were too cold to eat any. Next summer when we return we will be sure to try some. Thank you for the tip. Sandra xo


  4. Sandra, the photos are amazing! I’ve never been to Scotland but it’s one of my dream destinations. The only trip I’ve had so far was going to visit my friends, I took a decant of vintage Shalimar and a few samples. Turns out, Shalimar was enough 🙂


  5. Scotland is only a hop, skip and a jump away from me, and yet I haven’t been there! Have to remedy that soon, and me of the highland folk and all.


  6. Really good photos of the nature, Sandra! I’m so glad to see a text about Edinburgh with no negative commments. I fear my thinking about that destination may have been tainted by friends who weren’t so enthusiastic about the city. I’ve only ever been to Glasgow, which was nice, but poverty was strikingly visible (about 10 years ago). If I go again I would certainly look for a new cashmere pullover!

    My dream is to visit Shetland, and it should be very doable even if I think they stopped the boat service between Bergen and Shetland.

    I usually travel with decants or a 30 ml bottle of perfume (such as Atelier Cologne) and some samples. I need the variety, but often buy a bottle when on vacation.


    • Hi Ingeborg. Give Scotland another try with upbeat people. Positivity is highly contagious. Oh the cashmere was a dream. Seriously questioning why I did not get a cashmere cardigan. Next time… Shetland looks gorgeous as well. More companies need to make smaller sized bottles. That is why I love the Hermes 15mls so much.
      Sandra xo


  7. Hi Sandra! What a beautiful journey and great bonding time with your astute son.

    Scotland? All I can think of is Trainspotting; the film. Made such an unfair impression on me, I guess. I knew a Scot years ago who was so much like Begbie, minus the anger and violence. Weird.

    I am going to Lombok in just under 3 weeks. Gonna take a few Teone and Cult of Scent fumes with me. I CANNOT wait to go DF shopping at the airport. Promised myself a new scent or two.


    • Wow! What a beautiful vacation that will be Katesplace! I hope you have a wonderful vacation and that you find a beautiful perfume in DF to take back home with you. Sandra xo


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