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My Scotland - Gemma of Two Scots Abroad

Posted by James King on

Two Scots Abroad is an inspiring blog created by two young Scottish professionals who took a career break to spend 17 months traveling the world and sharing their experiences.

The Two Scots are now back on home territory. We caught up with Gemma to learn about her relationship with Scotland in the latest of our My Scotland series. Read on to find out how Nicaraguans stereotype Scottish people, the joy of dancing on bars and what makes for a good ol' Scottish adventure!

My favourite place in Scotland is…

Glencoe! I love how the area makes me feel so inferior yet secure. One of the best ways to experience Glencoe is by foot! My friends and I trekked 96 miles of the West Highland Way (mostly, I had to sit out day four due to injury) and were welcomed by the friendly deer at Kingshouse, Glencoe. Don’t be put off by the Devil’s Staircase part of the hike, she tickles!

A common stereotype of Scottish people is…

We are all tight! That’s only me hence being so good at saving and taking long travel trips! I have the kindest of friends and family who have supported us (Craig, my husband, and I) financially during our 17-month career break to travel the Americas and Europe. We were asked often (especially by Nicaraguans where Braveheart was a big hit at the pictures!) if men wear ‘skirts’! Nice to see that tartan suits are all the rage on the stage now.

Photograph courtesy of Corey Mendez Photography (

A Scottish adventure involves...

Dancing on the bar at the Port o’ Leith in Edinburgh on a Friday or Saturday night! My tour guide from an American road trip back in 2011 came to visit a few years ago. We went for a few tipples around the Leith area and ended the night at ‘the best bar in the world’ according to my good friend from Buffalo, New York! The next day you’ll need a sausage and potato scone roll and a stroll up Arthur’s Seat to blow away the cobwebs. Oh, and a ceilidh! Everyone that visits Scotland should do the Dashing White Sergeant with a stranger! We’re all friends during Scottish country dancing…  Finally, come in August and catch the world’s largest arts festival, Edinburgh Fringe.

Scotland gets under my skin because…

This can be taken two ways, the positive reason she gets under my skin - the people. The sarcasm, the banter - you just don’t get it anywhere else in the world. The scenery is also lush. The negative is obviously what contributes to that magical scenery - the rain. I really despise our relationship with alcohol too. Life is more than a pint on a Saturday (and Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, etc…)

When I'm away from Scotland I miss…

A half pizza supper (no salt just vinegar and sauce), my family, and friends.

Something that you didn't know about living in Scotland is…

We have free (at the point of use) healthcare and education system all the way up to university level (Americans go wild!), and a female First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon. Our teenagers were allowed to vote during the Scottish referendum - 16 year olds were granted the right to vote and can now vote in future Scottish elections! Sean Connery does not actually live in Scotland.

A big thanks to Gemma for taking the time to share her passion for Scotland with us. Find out more about Two Scots Abroad by checking out their website and following them on Facebook

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