Friday, October 12, 2012

Birthday trip to Edinburgh

I turned 29 in late September.

Does that mean I'll be 30 next year?  Yikes.

Anyway, Josh surprised me a couple days before by announcing that my present was going to involve a trip.  Actually, he asked me if I would be interested in a present that was in the form of a trip.  You know, because we've experiencing a difference of opinion on how much we try to squeeze in on a weekly basis, and he didn't want to give me that type of gift if I wasn't at all interested.  But I quickly agreed.  You only live once, and we'll only get to enjoy the ease of traveling with just one kid for a few more months.  Plus in addition to the trip I got to pick out a new pair of shoes.  Birthday success.

Trip destination?  Scotland.

Specifically Edinburgh.
t was on our "want to see" list AND you can drive there in less than a day.  We could have gotten train tickets up there too had we wanted to, but we figured that dealing with a potentially crabby toddler would be less stressful in a car because her crying would only affect us.  As it turns out, she was pretty good.  Maybe we'll brave the train another day.

Tangent: the train may be convenient, but it always seems to cost about twice what I want to spend.  We've found we can sometimes find flights for cheaper.

Anyway.  Edinburgh.  Despite being on an off cold and rainy, we enjoyed visiting this charming old burgh.

That's the view of the city from atop Edinburgh Castle.  It's hilly.  It's old.  There are cobblestone streets and old houses with different roof lines.  And since it's hilly there are all of these tiny alleyways (they call them "closes") with stairs to get from one elevation to the next.  The city is surrounded by water on a couple of sides, and rolling sheep pastures on the others.
It really is a beautiful spot.  There's lots of history and tradition -- and TARTAN (AKA woolen plaid) for sale everywhere.  I tried to convince Josh to get a kilt but he wasn't too interested.  I consoled myself with a pink tartan wallet.  We heard street bagpipers and walked by John Knox's old house and saw the room where King James I of England was born.  Oh, and more importantly, walked by the cafe where Harry Potter was first penned by J.K. Rowling.  Ha!  And in one day we ate both Asian food and Mexican food.  A very Scottish experience, to be sure.  Our hotel was conveniently located right off of the "Royal Mile" which is a stretch of road that runs from the Palace of Holyroodhouse (Queen Elizabeth's Scottish palace) to Edinburgh Castle, the stone fortress set up on a hill. 
best edinburgh1text

And the hotel?  Josh had reserved a room in a suite-style hotel, and they turned around and gave us a free upgrade to a suite with 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, PLUS a living room and kitchen.

And everyone who has ever had to put a child to bed early in a hotel room, and then sit quietly in the dark from 8pm on knows exactly why this was so fantastic.

Suffice it to say we enjoyed our little weekend trip.

Next up: Edinburgh Castle, and then Melrose Abbey, a falling down incredibly charming old church we stopped by on our way back to London.

1 comment:

Ali said...

Seeing these pictures helps me to see where JK got a lot of her inspiration. Very cool.