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Ian Montgomery

Mr. M
English 101-1n
29 October2014

A trip to the Home-world

"The birth-place of Valour, the country of worth; Wherever I wander, wherever I rove,
The hills of the Highlands forever I love" Robert Burns (35 Great Qoutes). Robert Burns is one
of the most notable poets of Scotland. When you go the British Isles you don't just go to one ice
of the isle you to both sides; Scotland and England. Scotland and England both have a lot to offer
for visitors of all nations. The Changing of the guard in front of Buckingham palace, touring the
palace itself, watching The Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo, sightseeing castles, history of the
land, and family reunions.
The voyage back the motherland all started with a flight from Philly to London, England.
When the plane landed, a taxi was hailed, and went to the hotel which was once a maternity
hospital refurbished to be a hotel. The next day would bring a change of some kind one that went
on for about four centuries! The royal changing of the guards. "Household Troops have guarded
the Sovereign and the Royal Palaces since 1660." (Changing of the Guard). This spectacle is
about switching out the old guard for the new guard. It wasn't originally for the open public to
watch it was just something they did and people flocked to see such event and it became world
known. Its seen by many a people but can one really appreciate the fact that these guards give
their lives for the protection of another person whether they believe in them or not. After the

guard has done its change people can tour the palace and the Royal Mews, also known as the
stables;

"After the tour we were in the gift shop when I was approached by a man in the uniform of the
Royal Mews. He said I had really well behaved children and asked if they would like to see
something special. I replied yes and we were escorted to a smaller stables were there were
several horses. He explained that while most of the horses were vacationing in Scotland they
always kept at least two or three around just in case. We got to pet and feed the horses. I asked
him what was his role in the Mews and imagine my surprise when he repaid he was the
Director. A private special tour by the Director of the Royal Mews because we have well
behaved children." (Montgomery Chip)
Soon England would be behind them and would be replaced by its northern
brother. Scotland! Where most of the trip would be spent. On the night of arrival in Scotland,
after stopping to check in at the Bed and Breakfast, family and friends met up. Some went out
drinking at the bars some went off to the royal Edinburgh Military tattoo. The tattoo is in the past
an end of the day ceremony" where a drummer would signal the pubs to stop serving beer and
for the soldiers to get back to the barracks. But in todays view it is a musical ceremony where
"Each year's Tattoo is very much a 'global gathering' - showcasing the talents of musicians and
performers from every corner of the globe." (About the Tattoo) A great time was had by all,
including the children, they saw not one but two historic events, the actual horses the queen used,
and stayed in a country filled with beauty and history.
The main reason for this trip was to go to a family reunion in the familys castle that has
stood since the year 634 A.D. The castle was first a church Built by Bishop Donan (hence the
name Eilean DONAN), but later in the not one but several transformations. One being a fortress
to help fight Vikings. "The first castle was later established in the 13th century by
Alexander II in an effort to help protect the area from Viking incursions" (Eliean Donan).
Vikings were notorious for pillaging the British Isles for centuries; they would burn, rape, and

ransack the towns they could find and just cause mass chaos and destruction wherever they went.
But the castle withstood all that and later would be used for a lesser known part of history but
still important to, what one day would be a national treasure to Scotland. A little incident with
the Jacobite uprising would cause a huge blow to the castle, literally. The Jacobite uprising was a
small rebellion against England in the years 1715 and 1745. The Jacobites stored over 350 tons
of gunpowder there, when the British found out they lit the fuse and blew it up. Causing mass
damage to the castle leaving it in ruins where it sat for 200 years. Lt. Col. MacRae bought the
property and restored it to be his familys home. Ever since then the castle has belonged to the
McRae Family. This castle is the most photographed castle in Scotland; it holds romantic
weddings and events within its halls, and is a huge tourism spot for it beauty.
But nothing beats the millennium family gathering back in the year 2000.
Family members came from all over from America, Canada, Scotland, New Zealand, even all the
way from New Zealand.
"I remember dressing in my formal attire at Agnes MacRae's B&B on the Isle of Skye. My kilt
was the Ancient Hunting tartan from Clan MacRae and the family all wore the same tartan, my
wife a sash and the kids vests. The reception was held in the cafeteria and viewing area of the
Eilean Donan visitor center. The music was provided by a local Celtic band. We tried to meet
as many people as possible and found out people had come from all over the globe. The majority
from America, Canada and Scotland. Before it got too dark we went outside to get our picture
taken on the bridge going to the castle. We met a lovely couple from New Zealand who took the
picture for us. Right after this everyone came out from inside and a lone Piper played from the
battlements of the castle as the sun set. A very moving experience." (Montgomery Chip)
Everyone came and went all leaving with different experiences all of them happy
and remembering a fun filled night. Hopefully the 2015 reunion can be just as exciting if not
better!

"Of all the small nations of this earth, perhaps the ancient Greeks surpass the Scots in their
contribution to mankind", Winston Churchill, British Prime Minister. The clan Mcrae are all

over the world and have contributed a lot in their own small ways even if its not noted by
history. The trip to the British Isles was a memorable one; even if one is very small it still rings
strong in ones mind of all the culture, places, and people and fun. Visit these isles and you will
never forget it.

Work Citied
1."35 Great Quotes about Scotland and the Scots." The Telegraph. Web. 29 Oct. 2014.
2"Changing the Guard." The British Monarchy. Web. 29 Oct. 2014. .
3. Montgomery, Chip. Personal interview. 29 Oct.2014
4."About the Tattoo." The Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo. Web. 29 Oct. 2014.
5"Eilean Donan." Visit Scotland. Web. 29 Oct. 2014.