And the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque looks like one I need to get down on my knees on their magic carpet to give thanks for.
Book a two-night stopover in Abu Dhabi and get your second night free. Visit www.etihad.com.
Now I’ve also found something else interesting in my inbox. Ten nights in Phuket’s 4* Baumanburi Resort & Spa with Escape2 http://www.escape2.ie two free nights in the 5* Sheraton Abu Dhabi Hotel & Resort.
Prices from €1149pp. Offers based on travel in February. Other dates available.
Sheikh it up TUI
It’s often the trips that you pass up, or are passed up for you, that stick in the mind.
Such as the invitation to go out to Sharm El Sheikh which came around a few years ago.
And which I kindly gave to a colleague.
Such were the instabilities then that a couple of weeks later Sharm El Sheik was hit by a terrorist atrocity.
Next month it’s St Andrew’s Day in Scotland and I know you’re all wanting to know why St Andrew is our patron saint.
Flying the flag
Well, we have to go back to 832 AD and a village in the east of the country which was still to be formed into Scotland.
King Angus of the Picts (basically the Highlanders) and a contingent of Scots (Lowlanders) was invading the Lothians.
They were run by the Northumbrians who were helped by Saxons, led by Athelstan.
Angus, fearing he would be overrun said his prayers (you would, wouldn’t you) and it seems that St Andrew was the saint who was up.
A white diagonal cross, that being the shape St Andrew was crucified on, appeared against the blue sky.
Angus was suitably inspired to vanquish his enemy and repaid St Andrew by making him the patron saint of the soon forming Scotland.
There’s the quaintest St Andrew’s Flag centre in a doocot (where pigeons live) in Atheltstaneford which is 15km south-east of Edinburgh… http://www.scottishflagtrust.com. It is open from April to October.
Wrapping myself up in the flag
St Andrew’s Day is November 30.
I like to wrap myself up in the Saltire as much as the next Jock.
And next to the St Andrew’s flag there is probably nothing more Scottish than bagpipes.
Or in the Big Dunkin’ Apple… New York does Halloween big time.
I visited NY with The Scary One, back when she was a little less scary, and my two little devils back in Halloween 2007.
When they were getting ready for the Eve of All Souls Day.
It’s a busy old time in the States with Thanksgiving only a few weeks away and with this being a Presidential election year too there were plenty of carved Barack Obama pumpkins.
Times have moved on and now we have Trumpkins instead of Obama faces.
We were fortunate enough to be staying near Greenwich Village where a million people gather to see the Halloween parade roll by.
It truly is a wonderful spectacle.
As was the gathering of Halloween dogs down at Battery Park.
All dressed up in their Halloween costumes and a couple of Supermen costumes too.
If you’re in NY for Halloween check it out.
NY is great any time of the year though and our friends at the ITAA (Irish Travel Agents Association) http://www.itaa.ie and Click and Go http://www.clickandgo.com have a great deal for us right in the heart of Manhattan.
Three nights, two sharing, in the 4-star The Gallivant Times Square for February.
You’ll be staying in a twin/double room on a room only basis.