If time and money were in limitless supply, I’d whisk you away for a fortnight and escort you around bonny Scotland in person. MyScottishHeart.com is Plan B.
You’ll find my favorite photos, snippets from my books, interesting bits of Scottish history, tips for travelers, helpful links to other Scottish websites, traditional recipes, recommended Scottish books and music, pen-and-ink drawings, and my wee blog.
I confess I’ve fallen hopelessly in love with Scotland, having traveled there eighteen times, often for several weeks at a go. In May 2014 I lead a Highlands and Islands, Castles and Gardens tour. Plans are afoot for a Lowlands tour in May 2016. When details are available, you’ll find them here.
My writing study is lined with one thousand reference books about Scotland from A to Z: Architecture, Birds, Customs, Dining, Education, Folklore, Gardening, History, Islands, Jacobites…och, they go on forever. I’ll mine them for all sorts of fascinating tidbits for you.
In case you’re curious, so far I’ve written eight books set in Scotland—six historical novels, one Victorian Christmas novella, and a friendly armchair travel guide. Pop on my Books page and see which titles grab your fancy.
If Scotland has stolen your heart as well, welcome home!
“Why Scotland, Liz?”
I’m asked that question so often I really should have a snappy answer at the ready.
“Because it’s the loveliest place on earth” is a beginning. “Because I’m fascinated by the country’s history” offers some justification. “Because men in kilts make my heart skip a beat” may be true, though it’s the skirl of a lone bagpipe that brings a lump to my throat. Crawfords and Walkers, two fine Lowland names, grow in my family tree, but we’ve yet to find our roots definitively planted in Caledonian soil.
How then to explain my abiding affection for Scotland, a country small enough to fit inside the state of Indiana with room to spare?
Perhaps because when I’m there, I have a sense of rightness, of completion, of belonging.
The verdant, rolling hills remind me of places I’ve lived—eastern Pennsylvania and central Kentucky in particular—yet the angle of the sun falling across the Lowland moors is uniquely Scottish. That slanted light works a kind of magic on me. The misty air softens my complexion. Sleep comes easily. Contentment seeps into my bones. I bite into a freshly baked oatcake, covered with a generous slice of sharp Galloway cheese, then sip milk-laced tea, hot enough to numb my lips, and I’m within walking distance of heaven.
I’ve felt this way since May 1996 when I first crossed the English border, driving north from the Manchester airport, and was greeted by a sign shaped like an arched door bearing a regal red lion and a single word in bold letters: SCOTLAND. I parked on the shoulder of the road, hands trembling as I photographed the sign, and then I wept with joy.
Home, home, home.
Excerpted from My Heart’s in the Lowlands
© 2007 Liz Curtis Higgs. All Rights Reserved.
Curious about my other nonfiction books or my speaking calendar? Visit LizCurtisHiggs.com