Balmedie to Edinburgh

Trip Start Feb 02, 2010
Trip End Feb 02, 2011

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Friday, May 7, 2010

Golly, I think when I said I wouldn't 'hurry back for seconds of Haggis’ I was misinterpreted. I didn’t mean I didn’t like, not at all I really enjoyed it, what I really meant was the thought of hearts and lungs and all the other bits and pieces in there put me off a bit, having been a vegetarian until just before leaving for this trip. You see I have a very vivid imagination, especially with food, even if the taste is wonderful, the texture of something can make me unable to swallow, or if the smell reminds me of something bad, or if I can imagine the heart in my Haggis beating away or finding a little piece of lung in there. (I saw a lung in the museum once so now I know what it looks like, I know what to look for in Haggis). No seriously, the Haggis Ann cooked and the Haggis Danielle served on toasted muffins with melted cheese has been a tasty delight. The exact meaning of: ‘I won’t be hurrying back for seconds though’ was if I saw it in a restaurant on the menu, I wouldn’t order it. Golly, golly I even confused myself there.

So in other news, on Wednesday as we left Balmedie, Steph invited us to a lovely complementary breakfast at ‘The White Horse Inn’ where she works, it was a great breakfast but sadly meant we didn’t have time to go to the beach one last time before we had to catch the bus into Aberdeen to get our bus to Edinburgh.

Although this day started and ended very well there were some teeth grinding anger moments along the way. We stood in the rain for half an hour waiting for our first bus, (the local one from Balmedie to Aberdeen), then the scheduled Megabus to Edinburgh wouldn’t change out of first gear so we were put onto a replacement bus. That was all ok, until we were sitting behind possibly the dumbest, stupidest couple in the world that also happened to have the most annoying voices in the world. Because of the bus complications we had to change buses about an hour down the road.

As we climbed onto the new bus, I looked around to try and spot if this annoying couple had also moved onto this bus, aahhh unfortunately they had and just as Felix was about to sit behind them I hurried him on further down the isle, whispering "no, no, not there it’s them." Well in the end it may have been better to sit behind them. I could have drowned out their annoying voices with music where I couldn’t drown out the screeching, laughing and mindless carry-on of the three fat, ugly bulldogs with pig faces we sat next to instead (Felix wants to be clear here – they were not actually dogs). Who on earth is so inconsiderate and arrogant as to think it’s acceptable to make so much noise on a long distance bus ride for the entire journey.

But anyway, when we arrived in Edinburgh, we caught a bus out to Newlandrig, where Danielle, another friend of mine from working on a summer camp in America was staying while she minded the house of her parents for the week. The bus driver who we asked to drop us off at our particular spot forgot to tell us but luckily someone else needed to get off there so when the bus stopped and we read the stop name we could get off rather then go sailing right on past.

Danielle met us at the bus stop with a big hug and introduced us to her lovely boyfriend Calum. She put the keys in the boot lock to open it, we put our bags in and when she closed the boot and tried to get the key back out to start the car again, the key would not budge from the lock. For the next half hour we wiggled, jiggled, twisted, pulled and pushed the key without it moving. Calum called his work and explained the reason he was going to be a little late and Danielle called her brother to come and help get the key out. It wasn’t long before Nial came to help in his super fast van and with a spray of WD40 into the lock the key came out. A funny thing to have happen.

When we arrived at the house, the party had started, you see Danielle and a group of friends had just handed in their last essay, ending their third year of uni. The wine was flowing and the hot tub was hot, we got a fire and a BBQ going and settled into a great night of eating, drinking and sitting in the hot tub – in the rain. That was really nice, the hot tub was so hot and the rain so cold and heavy, it was like standing in the rain but not getting cold, our bodies were warm but we still could enjoy the sensation of rain on our heads.

The following morning, we didn’t get a chance to sleep off our ‘wee’ headaches and catch the hours of sleep we lost to a good party, we had to rise and shine bright and early to get a lift into the city with Danielle who had to work. Felix, Calum and I spent the morning dozing in front of a movie at Danielle and Calum’s flat in town. It was only much later in the day, when we started to get very hungry that we ventured out, and only to the end of the street to get some, yep, again, fish and chips.

The activity planned for the evening, well wasn’t really planned as such, a friend of Danielle’s, Lauren called needing a model to do a practical exam on. An exam on applying many, many layers of make-up and calling it a light ‘day’ make-up. I volunteered to be the model, for the life experience… so Lauren arrived and began the assault on my face.  When she finished and I saw what she’d done I got quite a fright, I looked like my mother, that’s not a bad thing, I am quite a few years younger then her though – naturally, I looked so much older, and not just by a few years, by about twenty-five! She had put on about five different foundations, blushes and all that stuff all over my face, before giving my eyes and lips the same treatment. I think I looked absolutely horrible, but I didn’t want to be rude and wash it off when she was there so as soon as the door closed behind her I ran into the bathroom and washed furiously. I couldn’t believe how much stuff she had put on me and that it was supposed to only be a light day face.

The amount of make-up your average European and UK girl wears is really amazing. I have no problem with a little eye make-up or lipstick, the question I have is this: Who genuinely thinks they look better with so much foundation on? I’m not going to even get started on fair skinned girls (and guys) who think a super dark tan will look good. No in all honesty, Lauren, if your reading this I mean no offence, you do what you do very well as far as I can tell, make-up and artificial beautifying is just not for me.

Friday we were back to full fitness and spent the day exploring Edinburgh. After climbing Carlton Hill and stopping at the top to read our books and enjoy the view of Edinburgh and occasional burst of sunlight, we walked down Princess Street, stopping into all the tourist shops looking at Kilts. Felix has developed a new obsession – buying a Cameron Kilt. The Cameron of Lochiel tartan is not so common and is therefore not stocked as a pre-made Kilt, if Felix is to buy a Kilt it will have to be a specially ordered and fitted one, the most expensive too. We had walked for quite a few hours before we came across The Meadows, a big open field, surrounded by blossoming trees. Many people were enjoying the sunny day, having little BBQ’s, picnics, playing football. Felix and I were on a beeline to the museum, but couldn’t resist having a little sit in the park.

We sat in the park for maybe an hour, I don’t know, we completely lost track of time sitting there watching the people pass. It was only when we couldn’t ignore that we were getting very hungry that we moved up the road to a nice little pub called ‘Doctors’ where we had a really nice lunch and played cards for a while. By the time we had finished lunch it was too late to go to the museum so we wandered up the Royal Mile, into a very nice church and up to Edinburgh Castle and back again. We were planning to meet Danielle at the restaurant where she works but she didn’t finish until eleven and it was only shortly after eight so Felix and I went to see a movie. After the movie we went to meet Danielle at the restaurant, where Calum also was waiting for her to finish and she gave us a dinner that absolutely hit the spot, vegetable soup, salad and chips. Our day ended so nicely, with lovely people and good food. 
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greg on

Sounds like you are having an awesome time

Maria on

Ahhh.... so good to be reading another blog!!! Thanks Flexi for the clarification that the bull dogs weren't actually dogs - until I read that, I was wondering to myself what a bull dog laugh sounds like! And hilarious about the make-up session! Love that you have enjoyed so many fish and chips in the UK, TYPICAL!!!

About to look at your pics, but wanted to make my comments before I forgot them :-)

By the way, been trying to get in touch on Skype - look out for us, if you can!!

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