It seems like this trip came round in a flash. Around November Sam and I got an invite to his best friends wedding which was being held up in Scotland. We RSVP'd straight away and decided to turn it into a little holiday. I've never been before but had always wanted to. We booked the cutest little cottage right on the edge of Loch Lomond, a ten-minute walk away from the wedding venue. It was perfect and the most beautiful wedding. It's a trip I'll always treasure and I'm so happy I get to share a little bit of it with you.
When I said cute I wasn't kidding. We had the use of the little wooden gazebo and a table on the decking. Which got very well used considering the weather. Our hosts were brilliant too, more than ready to help and had plenty of recommendations for places to go. One of which we did visit. They had even left us biscuits, wine and chocolate. What more could you ask for?
The first night we met up with more of the wedding party at a local Brewer's Fayre for food and some drinks. They were all fab and so welcoming but by far the stand out event of the night was Sam managing to spill two glasses of wine over me and bless he was mortified. I found it rather hilarious...and milked it for all it's worth. Alone it was hilarious but even funnier was the fact that the couple we were sat with only twenty minutes before did the same thing (but only one glass). It was a night full of fun and laughter...even if I was a little damp.
A brilliant start to a brilliant week!
We scrub up rather well, don't we?
I'll admit I didn't realise what paraphernalia went into a bloke's suit. I started getting ready early because well I had to wash my hair, apply skin care, curl my hair and apply make-up...it takes a village for a girl to get ready, but then all we have to do is chuck on a dress. For a guy, there's the shirt, the waistcoat, the suit jacket and pants. You think that'd be it but no. There's also braces, a tie, a tie pin to stop said tie from moving. Wait there's more! A belt that must match the shoes and a pocket square that requires specific ironing and folding. WHY DO THEY DO IT.
I'll answer. Because then they end up looking like the handsome devil above (not that he isn't always obvs.)
The next time he tells me I'm taking a while I shall remind him of this day...and how I had to help with the hair...
After that performance, we went to the wedding. Which was beautiful. From start to finish every detail had been planned meticulously. There were nibbles provided in the interval, a photo booth at night but the highlight was the surprise the bride planned.
The groom is an absolute petrol head and the BMW Z4 holds a great deal of personal significance. The bride had got in touch with the forum and organised as many as possible to show up. Enter fourteen Z4's arriving in convoy as the photos were being taken outside. It was magical.
They held the ceremony outside and the meal and reception indoors. We made new friends, cemented other friendships and danced the night away. But not before we coerced a lovely lady named Emma (who just so happens to be a fellow bookstagrammer) to snap a few photos of me and Sam. I adore this photo. It makes me smile every time I see it. It reminds me of slow dancing, pulling silly faces in a photo booth and sneaking extra hors d'oeuvres.
Duck Bay Marina was beautiful and I left a little bit of my heart there.
What a beautiful place. We're already planning on going back.
The following day we went up to Glengoyne Distillery for a tour. We had a brilliant gentleman named Gordon taking us around. Firstly we were greeted with a glass of 12-year whiskey (I will say now I am not the whiskey drinker in this relationship) and shown a little video about the origins of Glengoyne. You'd expect it to be a factory type setting which it is in some areas but around the back, it's so picturesque with a little pond and all sorts. Fun fact, the pond water is using in the cooling system of the distillery.
We were shown every single step in the whiskey creation process. From adding water to the barley to the distilling process and everything in between. Our guide Gordon was so informative and showed us everything. He had the answer for any and every question. It was just us on this tour and it made such a difference. It felt so intimate and like you were really taken care of. We even got to take photos in front of the huge stills they used. They looked like something out of Willy Wonka. Though I imagine if you got stuck in there you'd know about it!
The final part of our tour was getting to blend our own whiskey as they do to create the same tasting product. The way our guide explained it was every single barrel is slightly different but when you purchase say an 18 year Glengoyne whiskey they must all taste the same. If they didn't you'd never really find your favourite drink and you wouldn't be able to repurchase it. The malt master must blend together different barrels and judge from sight and smell whether or not it is the same product.
We just blended a whiskey to our taste...and yes I mean taste. We were given a veritable chemistry set and tasted the product along the way. Then we bottled it with our recipe and boxed it in these beautiful little boxes.
Safe to say we both loved it.
The tour we did was named the Malt Master Tour if you're interested. I highly recommend visiting Glengoyne and taking this tour.
We returned to the cottage took a bottle of prosecco and some lovely three cheese bread out to the gazebo and talked the rest of the afternoon away. That night Sam cooked for us...trust me I know how lucky I am. We had steak, paprika chips, garlic broccoli and beef mayo. It seems to be the meal we have every time we're away but it's wonderful and probably my favourite he makes.
Sadly, the final morning was upon us. Before we started the journey home we visited Luss on the recommendation of a few people. It's supposedly Scotland's most picturesque town. Which I can imagine. The houses looked like little show homes rather than places people worked, or B&B's. The beach was busy even that early in the morning. There were already people out sailing and swimming.
We parked up next to the Loch Lomond Arms which is where we ended up having breakfast. What a fantastic breakfast too.
I, of course, went for my usual, eggs royale. Sam went for a Scottish full breakfast complete with potato scone!
I had the most amazing time in Scotland, made better by the lovely people I met, drank with and danced with. Of course, the main reason this trip was so special was getting to spend it with my favourite person. Who makes me giggle, smile and snort endlessly. Who cooks for me, helps sort out my dress and even carried my heels back home when I couldn't manage any more. I got a two for one deal, a boyfriend and a best friend.
I'm so glad I got to celebrate this wonderful wedding with so many wonderful people. I can't wait to see them all again
Also thank-you to Sam and Emma for some of the photos above. I took shockingly few shots this holiday...though when you forget to get the camera out you know it's been a good time.