Oct 26, 2011

Scotland/Ireland: 10/26/2011: Edinburgh, Scotland

From the Edinburgh airport we grabbed a shuttle bus (6 pounds or almost 10 bucks US, thank you Uncle Sam) and were dropped off around 10 blocks from the B&B where we would stay.   Unfortunately it appears as though Jen is as directionally challenged as I am, and although we eventually arrived at our destination, it was touch and go.  We were dragging our huge suitcases down cobblestone streets which although aesthetically pleasing, are HELL on luggage wheels.  Oh, and stopping for Jen to review the map every couple feet was a real joy as well.  Nothing screams, "I'm a tourist!" like fondling a map and the smell of fear (hmm, fondling and fear?  Reminds me of the last time....oh never mind).   Combine the walk, the brisk 46 degrees, cobblestone streets (with strangely placed street signs) with very little sleep after being on two plane rides and traveling over 5,700 miles away from home and what you have is a grumpy, bitter me.  (What's new?)

Finally at our B&B, we were allowed to check in early (thank you travel gods!).  We went to the elevator and the maid was already there, on the way up to our room to split the beds (queen size unzipped to two of the smallest beds you've ever seen) so there wasn't any room in the lift.   There's barely room in the lift for two people, let alone luggage and the spare tire I'm rolling around.  I suggested we just take the stairs so we started dragging our suitcases up the stairs, huffing and puffing like 20 cigarette a day addicts.  Finally on the second floor (yes, second floor) we were pleased to find a clean room suitable for a... hobbit.  Hmm...small rooms, small lifts, small windows, small cars, I'm willing to bet there are all kinds of things that are made smaller in the UK.  (Bow chica wow wow.)

After a short nap we headed out to explore.  What we found were more buses than any place I've ever been and people everywhere.  This town is busy, old, and has its beautiful sights.

Dinner was at the Whiske Room, a quant shop on the Royal Mile, which goes for a little over a mile from the Castle to the gates of Holyrood Palace.  The Whiske Room specializes in, well, whiskey.  Jen ordered a whiskey sour and haggis, which is sheep's heart, liver and lungs mixed with onion, oatmeal, spices, and other tasty things.  I passed on that since I really don't have a strong urge to eat sheep innards.  It looked like someone threw up in the middle of the plate.  Yum.   Good for her.  I tasted it, and it tasted fine.  If I were starving I'd surely eat it.  Luckily for me, I was not and nor do I intend to be, starving.   Whew.

We walked around Edinburgh after chow, checking out shops filled with Scottish cashmere scarves and kilts.  We were schooled on kilt etiquette by a man wearing a kilt but I couldn't help wondering if his bits were cold (since I was cold and I was wearing two jackets and jeans).

Back at the B&B we lounged on the bed while the lights went on and off as Jen changed the television channel.  I'm a little worried that I'll roll over on this hobbit bed and fall face first into the glass table next to me, but I'm sure I'll be tired enough to sleep in the glass shards.

Tomorrow we walk around some more, take a few open top buses around the city, tour an underground ghost area, eat some pub food and procure a scarf.  Friday we'll be heading to the country and that's the part of the trip I'm excited for.  Bring on the green fields, decaying castles, small town pubs and farm animals on the road.  I'll take farm animals over people any day.  Get your minds out of the gutter, people!

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