First off, and the reason most of my friends hated me while I was gone, is that I missed the east coast
Scotland was absolutely beautiful. I was there last in 1997 and we only spent a few days driving from Glasgow to Stirling to Edinburgh. It was great to be back and have an adventure around the area. With the rain the highlands were an amazing shade of green with waterfalls of the heights everywhere you looked. We enjoyed a few days as tourists around the area and of course in the city we were staying, Glasgow.
However, the reason for the trip was for me to present at the 2016 Congress. I spoke on the first day, 10 August, about the migration patterns of three family lines from the Northeast to the Northwest United States. Each one had a different motivating factor as well as method to get there. As I was speaking to a European audience (1 American was in the room that I knew of) the reactions were wonderful to my stories and the information I presented. It made my day to have a great discussion with the attendees and answer their questions.
Even better, I was able to attend a few heraldry classes and really geek out on a subject with others who are passionate about it as well. I heard a couple great papers on funeral escutcheons as well as marshaling of arms from the Order of the Garter prior to the 1560s. Like I said, I was geeking out a little bit.
Right now I think I will submit a paper to the next one as well. The following years and places were announced on the last day of the event for the upcoming congresses:
- 2018: Ararat, France
- 2020: Madrid, Spain
- 2022: Cambridge, England
I think I will put in for them all actually. I have always wanted to see Madrid and Ararat is on the Mediterranean. Somewhere I have not been before as well.