Lovely Edinburgh

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

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Thursday, May 13, 2010

Monday we had a good sleep-in I guess, I'm finding it hard to recall everything we have done and on what days, we have been doing so much. I can’t remember where Danielle or Calum were or what they were doing Monday, probably working but Felix and I stayed in Newlandrig, deciding to take the day easy, a break from the busy hustle and bustle of the city.

We went for a walk to Vogrie Country Park, a beautiful and huge area of land put aside as parks, bushland and a golf course. The park section was like most parks with large lawns, big trees, flower gardens, sculptures, a miniature railway, children’s playground and a café set up in the huge old mansion – Vogrie House. The bushland section was really beautiful; there were little tracks through the forest and along the bubbling stream. The golf course I didn’t experience but it looked nice from where I saw it. Felix and I spent half a day there playing and exploring, it was a really nice place.

When we got home Danielle and Calum were back and had brought another Edinburgh movie 'Trainspotting’ for us to watch, so we had a little movie night.

Tuesday Danielle had the day off work so she offered to take us on a little tour. Our first stop was Falkirk, where there is a really amazing piece of engineering called ‘The Falkirk Wheel.’ This wheel is used in place of a loch. Rather then a loch draining and filling to lower and raise the boat, the boat drives into a trolley full of water and is raised and lowered in a way that is very similar to a two carriage Ferris wheel. The size of this thing was really amazing.

After Falkirk we carried on to Stirling. We were dropping Calum’s sister back at uni and also hoping to get a chance to catch up with another friend of Danielle’s and mine from working in America. Unfortunately she wasn’t able to take a break while we were there because she was working flat out. Went and had lunch while we waited a while for her but she still couldn’t get a break so we had to make do with the quickest of hellos while she was still working. It’s been a bit sad this trip, there are so many people I wanted to see but just haven’t had the time or money to trek all over the country to see. It’s sad to get so close and still so far.

That afternoon our spirits were severely dampened and our day a little spoilt when we realised Felix had left his raincoat at Falkirk wheel. Amazingly Danielle knew one of the girls working there so through the power of Facebook, we arranged to have it sent to our next destination. Later Tuesday night we headed out to a pub we had visited earlier in the week called ‘Blackfriars Bobby’s’ for trivia night. A large group of Danielle’s friends met us there and they made a great quiz team, Felix was a usefully addition, I was not really good for anything except moral support. Not that it mattered, they (we, if I can count myself as a contribution) won by one point defeating the arch rival for the second week in a row, taking home a big bottle of gin.

Wednesday was our last day in Edinburgh. My two pairs of jeans both gave up in the crutch – no sooner had I patched up one hole and another would rip, they were totally threadbare. So Edinburgh was a perfect place to find new ones, Scottish people say shopping in Glasgow is better than Edinburgh but not as far as I’m concerned. Edinburgh has the most charity/op-shops I’ve ever seen in one city ever! It’s amazing, it’s wonderful! I could have spent a week just charity/op-shopping if only I had the money and space to carry it all. So it wasn’t hard to find a pair of pants.

After a couple of hours op-shopping we had an amazing tummy bursting Indian buffet, then headed off to the museum. Sadly we only got an hour there, we only got there at four and it closes at five. It really pisses me off the way we can’t ever get anywhere at a sensible time in the morning to actually have a good amount of time see something, we are forever getting rushed out of places at closing time and have only seen a one little bit of it. I want to blame Felix but if I want to do something I should just do it without him if he wants to sleep in.

Being kicked out of the museum with many hours of daylight left we decided to complete another task on our treasure hunt, ‘climb a mountain and look out over a lake’ or as they say here, ‘a loch.’ Fortunately for us, Edinburgh had a small ‘mountain’ right in the city with a very little loch conveniently located at its foot. So we set off up to Arthurs Seat. It was a literally breath taking climb in both meanings of the phrase. Sadly we didn’t have the camera because the battery was flat, but it was so beautiful, completely wonderful to have such a hill in the middle of the city – what a place to look out over a city from, a millions times better then looking from a high-rise! It is amazing how natural and rugged it still is for the amount of people who visit each day. Felix and I took our shoes off and climbed barefoot, it was so nice to feel dirt and grass underfoot again, it had been so long since I’ve walked barefoot. Walking up to Arthurs Seat has definitely been one of my highlights of Edinburgh.

Now comes a story I will struggle to explain with fairness to Felix’s side. After climbing down the hill we went to the cinema to try to see Robin Hood, Felix was so excited to see it. It was all sold out until ten forty-five and I didn’t really want to spend the last night in Edinburgh in the cinema rather then with Danielle – the reason we were here in the first place. I had said I might come if there was an earlier showing so I could still see Danielle a bit that night. So Felix and I power-walked at full power all across the city to every cinema but one in search of a Robin Hood screening.

Just as we were coming round the corner near the flat we saw Danielle was hopping out of a friend’s car, so we came up into the flat with her. There was a possibility we could have made it to a screening at a cinema ten minutes walk away, but most likely we would miss the first little bit of the film. I really hate turning up as the movie is starting, I like to get there and watch the previews and get settled so I’m ready when the movie I have paid the expensive price of a ticket for starts. I didn’t feel like rushing on my hungry tummy and already tired legs from the last power-walk only to miss a chunk a movie I didn’t really want to see anyway.

So because I had resigned to not seeing the movie, Danielle convinced me to come for a girly night out. "You always look like a boy" she said, “lets get dressed up and have fun.” I felt bad leaving Felix alone so after much deliberating and convincing from Danielle I decided to go out with her. I really enjoyed having a wardrobe of lovely clothes to choose from again, Danielle and I have very similar taste in dresses and we had a really fun night, I’m so glad I went out.

However in the morning Felix was in a sulk, which made me upset. Felix admitted he had no good reason to be sulky, I was perfectly entitled to go out with my friend, especially as the whole reason for coming to the UK was for me to enjoy spending time doing enjoyable things with them. It was just that he had been left in the house with someone he didn’t know, could not leave the house as he had no keys, had not had dinner, and hadn’t gotten to see the movie he had wanted to see for so long which he could have if we had been more organised and going out wasn’t a last minute decision. He had been so excited to see it as it is very difficult to find movies showing in English in the rest of Europe and he had thought it would make for a friendly romantic night out.

This morning I had a lovely little headache to remind me of the events last night not to mention sticky hair (thank goodness for plastic cups). We stayed horizontal as long as we could, jumping up at the last minute, quickly showering, packing and saying goodbye before rushing off to catch our bus to London. We stopped for a souvenir and very sadly at Subway being the only food we could find so we had something for the nine-hour bus ride and made it to the bus stop just as the bus was pulling into the station. So even if just, we are on the way to London. 
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Maria on

Great chairs and bike! But I can't understand what that Wheel thing is...

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