Most people are familiar with booking a journey, a weekend away or even an annual holiday on the internet; such is the ease of access and wealth of information available literally at the touch of a button; but making a life changing decision to move more than 4000 miles to a country never previously visited, all via one online forum.
I wrote about the successful monthly Twitter networking exchange, #ScotlandHour a couple of months back and, perhaps not so surprisingly it is via that very tweet-up that the above miraculous tale has started and where this story begins.
Thousands of Americans each year establish that they may be of Scottish descent, with a family tree traced back far enough to establish a tenuous link to Scotland, with which they build connections and establish relations; possibly an annual pilgrimage to the land of their forefathers.
For Glen Moyer however, the story is quite different; he fell in love with Scotland from afar; it is his goal for which he strives and his ultimate journey shall mark the end of a personal battle and a realization of his dreams, because Glen plans to give up his life of the past 60 years in Texas and make that first time journey, on a one-way ticket.
His interest and fondness for Scotland began whilst following the acclaimed Highland drama, Monarch of the Glen, in his native America, prompting Glen, editor of the American “Ballooning” magazine, to discover more and begin researching a possible vacation to Scotland.
Taking to the internet to plan, what was originally to be a two location holiday to Scotland and Ireland, Glen’s search took him to Twitter and the hugely popular #ScotlandHour, where Scotland enthusiasts chat and promote all things Scottish. Glen gamely joined in each month and immediately established valuable contacts and built lasting friendships; all of whom joined him in his planning activity with recommendations, invites, suggestions and enticing imagery.
The monthly gathering became something Glen looked forward to and indeed planned towards with purpose, looking for answers and solutions via an hour-long friendly twitter exchange, on which he has built and booked his dream…
“You and everyone I’ve met on or via #ScotlandHour have been so incredibly friendly and welcoming; those many friendships, even though they be online, have become one of the real joys in my life.” Glen Moyer
Such has been the power of information and the friendly acceptance of his plight, the good people of #ScotlandHour have unwittingly convinced the single gent from Texas to uproot and move to a country he has never yet visited.
Firm plans are now in place; booked are three destinations, dotted around Scotland, from where, a very excited Glen, can explore, discover and establish a much more physical link to his beloved place, fitting in a rendezvous with new #ScotlandHour friends and meeting prospective employers, resulting from the expedition of his CV in advance of his arrival. No concrete job offers are in place yet, however, given recent success with social media, it would be a surprise indeed if Twitter did not throw up at least one possibility.
The drive behind this would-be-Scot’s passion has prompted him to shed excess weight gained from “many years behind a computer” and live a healthier lifestyle; his reward: Scotland, where Glen sees his ultimate dreams being realized and his life transition beginning.
All that’s left is to find a happy ending to this cross-pond fairy tale, making the last of his three wishes come true and finding him a nice Scottish lassie; follow Glen at www.agleninscotland.com and let’s bring this Glen home to Scotland.
• Lisa Wilson is the founder of Scottish travel website Must Visit Scotland