Tuesday, April 16, 2013: Fake flowers in the throne room? How tacky.

In the past week(ish) I have spent approximately 19 hours on a train (this includes the train I’ll take back to London on Friday). I have been to south western-most point of the UK and in a few days I will be just a 100 miles shy of this land mass’s northern-most point. Next time, I’ll walk it.

After I got to Edinburgh, I walked to Cranchan & Crowdie, Beth and Fiona’s Scottish specialty store. Have not seen Beth and Fiona (friends of my parents, and by association, friends of mine) in years and years so it was much fun to catch up. After dropping my stuff off with them and chatting for a bit and getting oriented with Edinburgh, I made my way down the Royal Mile to Arthur’s Seat. I climbed to the peak and felt powerless. That wind had gale force. I had to sit down to lower my center of gravity so I wouldn’t be swept away. You could lean back and not fall, the wind was so strong. Scary. But I made it down in one piece and saw a rainbow! Then I went to the Palace at Holyrood House, the Queen’s Scotland residence. First I went to the museum there, the Queen’s Gallery, to see the exhibition of Francis Bedford’s photographs from his trip following Prince Edward (heir to the throne, son of Victoria and Albert) on his tour across the Middle East. In the four months of this trip, Bedford took 200 pictures. I’ve been in Edinburgh a few hours and have easily taken that same amount. But I suppose if you’re working with the wet collodian process, it’s not so simple to take large quantities of pictures at lightning speed. A well-curated exhibit and I thought the commentary by the curator Dr. Sophie Gordon and historian John McCarthy added a lot to the experience. After the exhibit, I went on a tour of the Holyrood Palace. Overall, very interesting and aesthetically pleasing. But it also help me arrive at the conclusion that the royal family should be abolished. Sorry, Joey Katz. And anyone else who might disagree. I also have an extremely long list of things I need to research on Wikipedia because I don’t understand the English-Scottish relationship/UK/Great Britain/monarchy and how that all makes sense together. Also, want to read more about Mary Queen of Scots. She seems like an interesting character. After a brief walk around the Holyrood Garden, I met up with Beth and Fiona and we made our way home.

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