Woke up around 1050AM, at which point I dragged my sorry butt to hotel spa/gym for push-ups and a little bit of floor-work, while hubby took advantage of the big tub for some soaking.
We ended up pulling out around noon-ish.
Our fabulous concierge had set us up with tickets for Edinburgh Castle, so we could avoid the ticket line. They were also kind enough to get someone to repair my favorite jacket, which had tears at the seams and pockets.
I love that jacket. It was part of two different Halloween costumes (Teddy Boy and Judy Garland). I wore it to Birmingham and London on the SQUEEEEE Odyssey and I’d hate to have it looking as bad as it did when I discovered the tears. We left the jacket with Kevin and went out in search of food on the Royal Mile.
Hubby had a BIG BREAKFAST and I had a tuna melt. Really good with a very nice salsa on the side. I didn’t realize it was a chain until we saw them all over London, but I gotta say it was really, really good. The fries were humongous and delicious. That and a diet coke gave me the energy for a day at Edinburgh Castle, which is very much an all day proposition. Absolutely massive. Hours of fun with the audio tour.
There was a guy in one of the reception rooms done up as the Earl of Moray. He did a great bit of schtick and also gave the history of Mary Queen of Scots and John Knox. We toured. We walked. We walked some more. We saw the War Memorial and the Scottish Crown Jewels and so much stuff I can barely remember. We even ran into a couple who’d been on our walking tour the night before. He was a local and she was from Canada. I recognized her from him and him from the earrings. I don't know the real deal, but my "head canon" was that she was a tourist and he was her Highland Fling, as it were.
When I was ready to drop, we had an awesome afternoon tea at the Queen Ann Café. Sorry for the food porn but the Carrot Cake was AMAZING an the fruit cake was so moist I thought it was a bread putting. More Earl Grey. WITH STEAMED MILK! And of course SCONES!!!
We did as much of the Castle as we could and still didn’t get to all the little bits. Then we took a walk along the less touristy area at the bottom of the hill which led us back to Princes Street and the Princes Street Gardens. The Gardens reminded me very much of Central Park in New York. Ross Fountain, stone walls, bandshell. It was a sunny day, although still crisp, and there was a great sense of people out in the park enjoying life. Benches with plaques. Couples. Dogs.
We chilled at the hotel for a bit and then went to Sandy Bells, so hubby could hear some traditional Scottish music. They had a very nice session going and hubby really wished he’d brought his mandolin. (Instead he schlepped his shakuhachi all over the place, and played it A LOT, thereby confusing most of the people we came in contact with.)
There was a dog that came in named Connie. A lovely kissy dog who put her paws on the bar. Really nice time. A good night to be in a warm bar. The music was winding down around eleven, but most of the restaurants in Edinburgh close by 10PM or 1030PM.
Hubby had fish and chips on the brain. I really was NOT hungry because of the tea, but it was late and I was making bad decisions because of fear of hunger. I should have just told myself I’d have a Luna Bar and the apple that I took from the gym that morning. But no!
The Clam Shell on the Royal Mile was open and I said “sure” and ended up eating an order of gloppy, doughy, greasy fish and chip. I understand that for certain folks like my hubby, that would be THE BEST THING EVER, but but it just made me feel gross and disgusting.
I don’t know if it was the fish and chips or all the tea I’d been guzzling, not to mention my Diet Coke from breakfast and throw in jet lag, but I could not sleep. I couldn’t even let go and TRY to sleep until 3:00AM. Luckily hllangel was awake at whatever time it was in the states and able to chat with me; we even watched Rachel together, while hubby slept soundly.
Even my stand-by “fall asleep” music on my Ipod didn’t help. Around six in the morning I put on a pair of gray leggings and that seemed to me doze off for a few hours, although when the housekeeper knocked on the door, it startled me so badly I screamed and scared her off.