So our stay in Belfast was a comedy of errors, which included two nights in the world’s worst hostel, an overpriced meal at the world’s worst Tex-Mex restaurant (to be fair, we should have known better), and essentially walking straight past a Loyalist protest that made the front page the next day in favor of the Christmas market where I bought the waffle mentioned in the title of this blog post (and pictured in that terrible blurry photo). The waffle-in-pocket quote, an empty snug at the famous Crown Saloon, and a fantastic meal at The Potted Hen were the high points in Belfast, a beautiful city that we did not get to appreciate fully.
Glasgow didn’t start off much better, as our hotel reservation, booked through a third-party service online, was not handled properly. In between dealing with that and doing laundry at the lovely Cotton Fresh laundromat on Paisley Road West, we didn’t get to see much of Glasgow proper. We were also a little disappointed with our hotel, which was not the three-star we had been promised, and cost a lot more than we had planned because of the reservation snafu.
Then, when we set out for a walk to try and find free wi-fi, we discovered the coolest place, directly across the street from our hotel. The Glasgow Climbing Centre is AN OLD CHURCH THAT HAS BEEN REFURBISHED WITH CLIMBING WALLS and has a lovely little cafe (with free wi-fi) located “at the top of the spiral staircase.” Suffice to say, I love this place. I’ve only been rock climbing once, and it was a terrible experience at a gym in Texas, but I am so glad the Glasgow Climbing Centre let us sit in their cafe (The Balcony) on a rainy Thursday afternoon and chill out for a spell. Completely redeemed Glasgow for me… possibly rock climbing as well.