Uh, why are you in Scotland?

on January 20, 2011 in Scotland with 20 comments by

I’ve gotten this question quite a few times, so I realize I probably haven’t told you enough details. Let the interview begin.

Are you on vacation?


Are you on sabbatical?

Nope. Laughable. People who work really hard and are highly stressed in their jobs get a sabbatical. I try not to do either of those things.

Are you moving to Scotland?

Stay outta my biz-nass.

No seriously. Are you?

Honestly, I don’t know.

So, why are you in Scotland?

I am here staying with some missionary friends, Tom and Leigh Ann Fraley. They moved here about two weeks before I moved to Nashville (in 2008). Living in Scotland has been a beat of my heart since May 16, 2000, when I landed here the very first time. It felt like home. So Tom and Leigh Ann and I have spoke multiple times over the last 2.5 years about what it would look like if I ever came here for a L O N G E R period of time (whereas before I was on trips for 2 weeks max).

But there is this kink in the plan. That kink is called I LOVE NASHVILLE. I never planned to love Nashville. But I love it. It feels like home. And now I don’t want to leave.

Uh. Oh. We’ve got a problem on our hands, don’t we?

Exactly, Imaginary Interviewer. Three cities (Marietta, Nashville, Edinburgh) that all fight for my heart and my attentions and my address.

[Just like the fellas. I mean, sorta. Okay, not really. But a girl can dream?]

So what are you doing in Scotland?

So I’m just here for a month, in the winter [which I have never seen before- I’ve only come in past summers], to see what I think and to have fresh ears to hear God. I’m joining a gym, I’m going to meetings and services with the Fraleys, and serving their ministry as best I know how. I’m hanging with some folks I know from the last few summers. I’m attempting to make new friends, I’m still writing and working and enjoying the gorgeous view. I’m trying to really “live” here.

So in simplest terms, I picked up my life [minus my friends] and moved it, kit and kaboodle, to Edinburgh for a period of one month.

So do you have to make a BIG. LIFE. DECISION. at the end of this month?

I’m not feeling pressured to make BIG. LIFE. DECISIONS. I’m not. And I may leave here in February and just scooty-poots right on back to Nashville, hug my friends, and pick up where I left off. And in fact, unless God stamps something else on my heart, that is exactly what I am doing.

It’s about listening to God.

It’s about being brave.

It’s about taking one more step towards a dream that has lived in me for a solid decade.

It’s about trying something on for size, not really sure when you will wear it.

It’s also about loving this place. I want to be here because I love it.

So that’s why I’m in Scotland.

Thanks. I was wondering why you thought you deserved a sabbatical.



  1. Belle
    posted on Jan 20, 2011 at 5:58 PM  |  reply

    Good for you!!! I got to spend a month in Edinburgh about 15 years ago and loved it! Take the train to Aberdeen for a couple of days. Gorgeous!

  2. posted on Jan 20, 2011 at 6:01 PM  |  reply

    I love taking my Caboodle on vacation. That’s what they were made for… in the 80’s.

  3. posted on Jan 20, 2011 at 7:06 PM  |  reply

    Some of my dear friends from college moved to Scotland…he’s in grad school and she works, explores town, and eats yummy food.

    Here’s their blog if you want to look them up!! You’d like them.


  4. posted on Jan 20, 2011 at 8:25 PM  |  reply

    Annie- I love the fact that you are pursuing this dream…. I mean it! It takes courage, you are right! I had an opportunity ages ago when I was in college to spend a summer working at a hotel in Ireland. The owners were friends of my parents. I never went and I have regretted that. I was too scared, and didn’t really consider everything. I’m happily married now with 4 precious children. My family is where my heart is at… and I just can’t pick up and pursue these old dreams of mine. That’s okay though…. I’m just really proud of you for doing this while you have the opportunity. Loving that courage of yours girl!

  5. Merideth
    posted on Jan 20, 2011 at 8:51 PM  |  reply

    Live it up girl! Hope the Lord really speaks to you this month! Love your heart to persue these dreams of yours!

  6. Ashley Thomas
    posted on Jan 20, 2011 at 10:46 PM  |  reply

    what about medical insurance?

  7. posted on Jan 20, 2011 at 11:21 PM  |  reply

    What an amazing trip and experience for you, just listening for God to speak to you. I’m praying you’ll know.

    Before we celebrated our anniversary in October, we saw this trip to Scotland that was being organized by the High Museum in honor of an exhibit there now (an exhibit of paintings from Scotland at the High now). We joked that that would be what we did for our anniversary, go on this majorly expensive trip organized by the High.

    My husband’s ancestry was Scottish and his dad was really into researching their clan (Guthrie) and all of that. He helped organize the Scottish Games in our home town in Arkansas.

    Have an amazing time!!!

  8. posted on Jan 20, 2011 at 11:28 PM  |  reply

    Shouldn’t it be “kilt & kaboodle” since you are using the term in reference to going to Scotland?
    Very excited for you.

  9. Sara Beth
    posted on Jan 21, 2011 at 12:07 AM  |  reply

    Am I the only person that laughed out loud reading this? Amazing. LOVE that you are there.

  10. posted on Jan 21, 2011 at 12:41 AM  |  reply

    you are such a blessing…and singing my heart song with every word about how in love you are with Scotland.

    Thanks for letting me live vicariously through you!

  11. posted on Jan 21, 2011 at 9:35 AM  |  reply

    Find a guy named Marty, Nash, and Eddie and let them Duke it out. winner is where you move

    I know you dont have to say it, i should solve all the worlds problems. Wait no, I take that back, that sounds too much like war

  12. shireen eldridge
    posted on Jan 21, 2011 at 10:03 AM  |  reply

    You couldn’t be hanging out with better people! Please tell them I said hi…and enjoy your time there figuring out life. They are great people to talk to! Personally, I think you would be a great fit with them and what they are trying to do there. Love you Annie!

  13. posted on Jan 21, 2011 at 1:35 PM  |  reply

    I LOVE Donald’s comment – great way to figure it all out. Ha! 🙂

  14. posted on Jan 21, 2011 at 2:24 PM  |  reply

    This post speaks to me in such a crazy way. My husband and I are moving home (WA) next week from NY after 11 months. It scares me more than moving to NY did. My roots long for WA but I really grew in NY. And now my biggest fear is to go back home and never see my dreams realized. (A lot of which had to do with NY) And when he’s done with school will we be blessed with dreams and desires that compliment each other in a way that glorifies God? We shall see. All this to say thank you for being brave and thank you for being honest (in such a public way) about your fears and exciting possibilities.

  15. posted on Jan 21, 2011 at 9:28 PM  |  reply

    That interviewer was kind of bossy.

    I love that you being in Scotland doesn’t affect our relationship At All. Hooray for interwebiness.

  16. posted on Jan 21, 2011 at 9:41 PM  |  reply

    what? you’re in Scotland? with The Amazing Fraleys? um…you are getting SO BRAVE…leaping in faith here and there..knowing GOD will take care of you. you amaze me. Come back with an accent ok?

  17. posted on Jan 22, 2011 at 1:52 PM  |  reply

    You’re very inspiring, Annie.:o) May just start tackling some of my dreams in the near future.

  18. posted on Jan 22, 2011 at 6:31 PM  |  reply

    Hey Annie, you know Dietgirl visited Scotland and ended up GETTING MARRIED….

  19. Kim
    posted on Jan 24, 2011 at 1:05 AM  |  reply

    Eek, so exciting! I’m starting to think maybe the best parts of our lives are the times when we have no idea at all what is going on. At least that’s what I’m telling myself this year 😉

    Best of luck with your month in Scotland! I just know it’ll be life changing and amazing.

  20. posted on Jan 25, 2011 at 2:03 AM  |  reply

    SO FUN! I love that you are embracing and testing the waters and that you are letting us in on the journey. Have a blast! I hope you are refreshed and hear what you are supposed to hear about the next step!

    And take cool pictures, too. It is SCOTLAND, after all, right?!

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