It's like Canada, only better!

Got back from Scotland yesterday and I'm still a little travel weary. I had to beg, borrow and deal to get from Dulles Airport to Edinburgh but my time spent there was worth it. Scotland is a beautiful country with some of the friendliest people you will ever meet. Or as my dad said, "It's like Canada, only better!" (in fact the Scotland should make that its official tourism slogan)

Dulles Airport has to be one of the worst airports in the country, with some of the least helpful employees ever. They make the people at the DMV look like models of efficiency. I got to the airport at 2:30 even though my flight didn't leave until 5:30, figuring if I showed up early I could avoid some of the hassle. Wishful thinking.

Instead my flight to Newark, New Jersey was cancelled and I had to take a bus to Newark in the middle of Washington D.C. rush hour traffic. So a trip that should have taken 45 minutes by plane took 6 hours by bus. Needless to say I missed my connecting flight to Edinburgh, and had to spend the night in Jersey where my room had a beautiful view of a tin can factory (reason # 241 why I hate Jersey).

Once I got to Scotland the weather was perfect, clear skies and temperatures in the low 90's, and when I asked around most Scots said it was the warmest three days they had seen in years. The mountain biking trails where some of the best I had ever ridden, and I highly recommend the 7 Stanes trails if you're into mountain biking.

I spent the first three nights in the village of New Abbey, where the biggest building is the ruins of Sweet Heart Abbey. The next three nights I spent in the slightly bigger town of Peebles, that was voted the second most beautiful town in the UK three years in a row. And of course, I stayed in Edinburgh the last night and my only regret is that I didn't have enough time to explore the city.

Anyway, getting back to sports news it appears as though I haven't missed much with the Bucs. No cuts, no signings, no police blotter reports, no big news of any kind to report. Hell, both the St. Pete Times and Tampa Tribune only have one new story between them, a Trib story on the Buc's preseason games being on high-def (talk about your slow news day).

Other than the British Open, and the occasional Tour de France update, I have no idea what has transpired in the sports world over the last seven days. But being able to watch the Open live on the BBC more than made up for not being able to watch SportsCenter on ESPN.

The BBC had live coverage all fours days from the Old Course at St. Andrews, and the commentators did an excellent job of describing the action on the course, offering nuggets like, "It's been a difficult day for Luke Donald, everywhere he goes people applaud for Jack," on Donald being paired with Jack Nicklaus the second day. And wathching Jack Nicklaus's last three holes at the Old Course was one of the highlights from my trip, the way Jack handled the moment with the kind of humility and grace that has become so rare in the sports world today.

I'm sure I will have more posts throughout the next few days on sporting news from the last week, as I catch up with what has transpired. In the interim I will leave you with one last reminder of Jack's goodbye to the Open.

Jack Nicklaus

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