Day 12 – Edinburgh

[NOTE: My journals from our honeymoon from here until the end are a bit lacking because I took notes and then didn’t go back and finish writing them until over a year later.]

When the next day dawned, our clothes were still not dry, and I had to resort to using hair dryer. Do you have any idea how long it takes to dry a sock, let alone a shirt, with a hair dryer? I don’t recommend it.

We descended the plaid stairs to have a pretty decent breakfast. Our hostess has a twin sister that helps out during meals. I thought it was extremely unfair that they were wearing the same color shirt, because in my early-morning brain-fog it took me a few minutes to realize that the conversation I started with the hostess I completed with her sister.

It was a cold and drizzly morning that we set out into, trying to find a local launderette. After circling the block several times, and having me dash out in the rain with the clothes while Heath continued to circle, finally got our clothes on their way to being clean and dry. We dropped the car back to the B&B and walked to Edinburgh Castle and the Royal Mile.

We started at the top of the Royal Mile with a tour called the Scotch Whisky Experience. It was overpriced, slightly insulting to Americans, but rather informative. I’m not normally a scotch-drinker myself, but after the tour, I managed to drink my whisky without gagging (a first for me) and my appreciation for scotch has grown.

We wandered over to Edinburg Castle, but opted not to go inside as the whole entrance was occupied with them getting ready for their annual military tattoo. We took pictures from the edge of the mayhem.

Next we wandered through the Tartan Weaving Mill. Free, but it was basically a maze of different vendors selling all kinds of different things, all pretty pricey. We got a Christmas ornament for Heath’s grandparents and another ornament for us. Sadly, the tartan exhibition was mostly just a series of unlabeled mannequins. We did get a picture of a guy weaving a tartan, however, and got to see some folks working both a manual and machine loom.

Next up, lunch at a tiny dark pub on the Royal Mile. I don’t remember the name of it, but it had surprisingly good quiche.

After lunch, we went to an attraction that I’d picked out – a Camera Obscura. Built by a woman named Maria Short in 1853, she made it open and available to the public and it has been in use ever since. The camera part of the exhibit is really brief, but the rest of the building is packed with all kinds of objects and exhibits related to the science of optics, and geared more towards families. I even tried this odd morph machine that changed my face into that of a monkey.

After that, we headed further down the mile, and did some window-shopping. We arrived at the Real Mary King’s Close – something Heath really wanted to see since the History channel’s “Cities Underground” episode about it. We’d arrived at about 4:00 PM, and even though they were open until 9:00 PM, the attraction was so popular that they didn’t have any more tours available until 1:00 PM the next day. I was so disappointed, because I took the time to track down the tour after finding out it was open to the public, and Heath was so jazzed about seeing it.

We had a nice walk in the sun back to the B&B, stopping to pick up our laundry on the way. Relaxed for a bit, went out for Chinese food at a place called “Good Food Chinese Restaurant.” It didn’t live up to its name, and we should have left as soon as we saw how empty it was. Oh well.

Got back to the B&B and reshuffled all the clean clothes in our bags to cushion our souvenirs.

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