Thursday, April 2, 2009

Edinburgh, Scotland

My mom came to visit me on her spring break in March and took Danielle and I on a 10 day journey through Scotland and around England.  Before picking her up at the airport, we retrieved most of our train tickets and to give you an idea of just how many we had, I stacked them next to a deck of cards.

This was taken at the airport around 6:30a.m.  Her flight ended up landing early which made us late meeting her, but she was a good sport and patiently waited for us.
We left the airport on a train headed to Scotland, and the trip should've have taken four hours with no changes.  Here's how things ended up going:

Train from the airport to Salford
New Train from Salford to Bolton
Bus from Bolton to Preston
New bus from Preston to Lancaster
Train from Lancaster to Edinburgh

Twenty minutes into our train ride from the airport, we were told everyone had to exit the train because of a power outage at the Preston train station caused by a fire.  We were dropped off in a random city and had to play the rest of the journey by ear.  It was very draining and ended up taking nine hours!  This is a picture of us on one of the station platforms waiting to hear what we were supposed to do.  When we finally made it to Edinburgh, we only had time to eat dinner and relax before we went to bed at our cool bed and breakfast.  We stayed in walking distance from Edinburgh Castle, and that's my mom and I on the front steps of the B&B.

On Friday morning, we headed to the castle and on the way there Danielle and I saw a sign in front of a fountain that said 'no bathing' and realized our plans for the morning had been thwarted.  

As you can see, the castle is on a very steep hill (those men in orange suits are attached to ropes and are working on stuff) and is more of a fortress.  There is everything you can imagine in that castle: a hospital, barracks, a place to store weapons, a dungeon, church, etc.  It's a small town inside!

The one o'clock cannon has been going off everyday at 1:00p.m. since 1861 and used to be for alerting the ships in the North Sea.  While at the castle, I was pretty much forced by Danielle and my mom to volunteer to be Mary Queen of Scots while the lady playing the part of Queen Mary's maid did her reenactment.  All I had to do was pretty much sit there and at one point time I'm going to make Danielle volunteer no matter what it is!  The carving is an American flag on an actual door from the castle's dungeon.  It makes me wonder who the guy was who carved it, how he ended up there and if he ever made it back to America.

We did a little shopping at the woolen mill after leaving the castle and saw some fabric being woven while we were there.  There were so many patterns to look at!  After that we headed to a cafe for lunch where a bagpiper was playing on our way in, which made the fact that we were in Scotland even more real to me.

This was our last look at Edinburgh before we had to get our luggage and head to the train station.  We were there less than 24 hours which only makes me want to go back and spend more time exploring.  I guess I'll just have to add it back on my list of places to see!


and83 said...

Thank you for updating and thank you for posting pictures...You look sooo much like mom :o)

D's Mom said...

I love all of the photos. I can't believe everything you did and saw in just 24 hours! Amazing. You do look so much like your mother. I am jealous that she got to come over. I knew I should've booked a trip :-)

PS: You made a great queen!