Sunday, May 04, 2014

Edinburgh - Take I

We're here!

It's funny to actually be here after all of the anticipation and planning.

Friday: arrival & first explorations

Our bed and breakfast is simple and clean. Claudia met us at the door to let us in and willing answer all of our questions. A lot of folks in the service industry here seem to be from other countries - it's so fun to try to decipher accents.

Had dinner at Tempus - a lovely restaurant and our waiter was from Poland. She had fun suggestions for enjoying the city while we were there.

One of the very highlighty-highlights was wandering the streets and just getting used to the idea that we really ARE in Europe... and then we wandered into an Irish pub that was actually in the middle of a sing-along! We sheepishly hovered till someone moved over and offered us seating, and ordered a pint each. We sat and joined in when we could. The quality isn't good - but listen for a bit of what we heard... so, so fun!

Saturday: the castle! and random Edinburgh meanderings

The castle is really just a cool place - amazing history, amazing stories. We had a 1/2 hour tour and then wandered about for hours. Both ended up being a great way to get to know the country a bit - knowledge that we get to build on as we spend more time here. Click on the photo for a few more pics.

We also did a bit of shopping - LOTS of woolen shops here and it's fun to try to get a feel for what is good quality, and what is there just for tourists (e.g. polyester kilts made in China vs woolen ones made here. And no, we're not actually kilt shopping!). We got to tour one place where they actually weave tartan fabric - very cool. 

Sunday: old church, cool museum, Wee Folk Club

We thought it might be fun going to a church in Edinburgh, and we picked  a beautiful cathedral called St. Giles. Turns out it was founded in the 1120s. For real. The really-cool part was that this church (and one of it's most famous churchmen, John Knox, was a huge part of the Reformation - so much of the history we'd been learning (and would keep learning about) centered (or would that be centred?) on this place.

After more fun times bashing about the city (I learned how to SPIN YARN! And we spent way-too-much time in the National Museum of Scotland) we wound up at the Wee Folk Club in the tiny basement of the Royal Oak pub. Really just neat times.

Here are a few photos of our time in the city: click here.

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