This past weekend I had the pleasure to visit both the Christmas markets at Edinburgh and Glasgow here in Scotland. Thought different locations, the two events were very similar. The streets were filled with small markets that were selling various items such a plaid scarves, carefully crafted leather covered journals, delicious foods, beautiful lights, and so much more. I assume that the point of these Christmas markets is to give small businesses a chance to sell to hungry and wallet-heavy customers who are looking for unique gifts for this holiday season. For the past four months of this trip, I have truly enjoyed every second and minute, but I could not help to be reminded that I am an outsider. Four month and about one hundred and twenty days cannot break the glass that separates me from the people of Scotland. I was observing from the outside. Perhaps, that is why I enjoyed the Christmas Markets so much; because on that cold night, surrounded by twinkling lights and the subtle hum of the surrounding crowd, it did not matter that I was an American encompassed by Scottish. In that moment, we were all just people. We were all just individuals trying to enjoy the holiday we all so dearly love. For what seemed like the first time in Scotland, I felt apart of a community. I guess Christmas does bring people together.

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