Posted by: jodester87 | April 19, 2009

Edinburgh The Last Two Days

17 April 2009

Breakfast was at 8:30 am where Joyce and I met a couple staying at the Bed and Breakfast from Australia. Well the gray overcast was suppose to lift during the day (it never did). We hiked up the extinct volcano to Edinburgh Castle. It cost 12 pounds to get in and at the time there were no lines (pays to be early). When we had gone through the gateway the wind had picked up and I could feel it wanting to toss me about. However, the view over Old Town and the West Side was beautiful. While at the castle we saw St. Margaret’s chapel (really tiny, probably a late Romanesque church based on its architecture), the Honors of Scotland (‘Stone of Destiny’ crown, sceptor, and sword), the royal chambers, great hall, and war memorial. We also saw the Half Moon Battery that has Robert the Bruce’s son burried beneath it. I’ve noticed this about my time in the Isles, the royals like being burried underneath things such as that.

After seeing everything we wanted to see Joyce and I made our way down to the Royal Mile yet again so we could climb Arthur’s Seat. Now for those who don’t know the reason why the street is called the Royal Mile is because at one end of the street there is Edinburgh Castle and a mile down the road is Holyrood Palace. A little over halfway down we stopped at a snack shop in order to warm up a bit with hot chocolate. Really reasonably priced and you get a student discount.

With warmer bodied we turned right at the end of the street, seeing glimpses of the palace and seeing the very modern Parliament building. Going past a parking lot and crossing yet another street we started our ascent of the mountain. It gave amazing views of the city. you could even see the North Sea from thre. It wasn’t until we reached the top that we realized I had led us up the wrong path and we had climbed to the top of Holyrood Park. Oops, sorry. We could see Arthur’s Seat, but we ate lunch first (being beaten by the wind).

Then we started the steep climb up. Oh was it steep. Joyce led the way at a grueling pace and ended up leaving me behind several times. I’m one of the people that’s very much the turtle when climbing up mountains (a steady leisurely pace) so I would stop to rest my muscles because I didn’t want to pull and damage them and I wanted to enjoy the view. But whenever I looked furthur up the path I would have to go as fast as I could, almost slipping several times on the rocky and narrow path, in an attempt to catch up. She never looked back and didn’t hear me when I called out to her asking to slow the pace down. Towards the top I said fuck and then collasped at the top as I tried to catch my breath for the first reasonable stop. When I stood up my body could feel the force of the North Sea wind wanting to hurl me off the mountain. By this time my hands were froze and slightly swollen (it was suppose to warm up that day and it didn’t). I also swore that I felt a snow flake while up there.

Fed up, tired, and cold we eventually made our way back down the mountains through a bog, back up the Royal Mile, to our Bed and Breakfast where we dethawed, drank tea, and rested a bit before dinner.

Dinner was at a place called the Filling Station on the Royal Mile. It was one of those places that takes the American road trip idea and transports it to the local culture. The waiter was really kind and got us our food and drinks really quickly. Joyce had a Magners for dessert, and when she was thinking out a math I had to apologize yet again for irritating her when I said that the amount wasn’t enough but she left out a fact that I didn’t hear. Hell I apologized for being irritated at being left behind on the mountain earlier as we were coming down.

Early night yet again.

18 April 2009

Sleeping in can be very nice. Well I tried and didn’t succeed all that well for reason I won’t explain. Had breakfast at 9 am, checked out, and did some last minute shopping. I was still hunting for the perfect Campbell memento. I finally settled for a clan crest necklace. It has the family motto of Forget Not, which I do believe works for me because it is sometimes very difficult for me to let go of the past.

The last Edinburgh thing we did was walk through a hillside park that had been previously closed off to us. This park was littered with daffodils of varying shades of yellow and degrees of life. The castle stands sentinle over it. Very picturesque. We went back to grab our things and headed to the train station to leave.

Outside the national gallery there was a street preformance advertising the Beltane Festival that was to come up in 10 days. There were drums with an awesome beat, dancers, and fire twillers. Why couldn’t we have seen these people sooner? Oh well.

The train leaving Edinburgh teased me with glimpses of the sea coast before it would disappear behing hills, houses, and trees. Not even thirty minutes into the journey home Joyce needed to get a new seat because the people around her were drinking and she was scared that they would start harassing her. After telling her to talk to a member of the staff she got a new seat. Luckily the ones behind me were vacant and that was her new location. Granted the guys got off after a couple of stops but when they got off two babies and loud mobil phone talker got on.

But eventually we got back home and this was posted.

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