Friday, June 4:  The Edinburgh Castle

I woke up with a slow start, and then went to the breakfast room to eat. It was set up like a restaurant, and had little booths and things to sit at. We sat at the one with our room numbers on it, and then looked around. On the wall was a bunch of kilts, all different kinds of plaid. Then the woman who worked in the kitchen came out, and gave us our food, which we ordered off of a sheet of paper yesterday. First came my orange juice and porridge, which was both really good, but I think I’ll put more sugar in my porridge tomorrow. After that was eaten, the main part came. I had the baked beans, egg, sausage and bacon, and all was great, except my baked beans got in the way of everything, and was a bit messy. Then we were all done, so I went back upstairs and did some of my homework for a while, and then we got organized for going out. We decided yesterday to go to the Edinburgh Castle today, so we got our stuff and walked outside, in the direction of the bus stop, because it was right on the same High Street that we ate lunch at yesterday. After a couple stops we got off, and then walked to the end of the street, where it was. We were inside of a huge lot, with a big construction of bleachers on either side, because of some Tattoo Festival in August. We got in the long line, and Robert and I played 20 questions until we had purchased our tickets and went in. This was kind of like Warwick, with a bunch of things to do, with no main attraction. First we looked out to the view around us, seeing all of Edinburgh. After that we walked up the road to the courtyard, where we looked down to see a little patch of grass that was a cemetery for soldiers’ dogs! You could read the tombstones of “Rex” and “Sunny.”

Next, everyone went inside of a building to see the Scottish Crown Jewels, and it would be cool to see them, because the English ones were expensive to look at. After some winding of rooms showing how they were lost, and then found, we came to the room with the actual things in a glass case! There was a crown with purple, a staff, a sword, and another thing that I don’t know about. The light hits it just right, and it sparkles beautifully. Then we were hurried off, and we popped out into a very small plaza. We were in front of a war memorial that looked like a church, so we went inside. It was smaller on the inside, but with a beautiful stained glass of the soldiers, and huge tapestries of awards on the wall. When we all had seen enough, we went back out and across the dog grave yard and back to the place where we were looking at the view, where there was a War Museum. It was the official Scotland war museum, and was a little separate from everything else. We walked in, and started looking through the 6 exhibits. They showed things about old wars, like with the red coats, and had their old suits and stuff. Also, it housed an actual Nazi flag! I liked the movie about how bagpipes was the “instruments of the battle field.” Then we emerged in the gift shop, where my mom thought it was a good idea for us all to try real Scottish toffee, so we got a bar. It was very good and creamy, with a unique taste. We payed, and then left. Now we were ready for some lunch, so that meant going to the cafeteria called “The Red Coat Cafe.” We grabbed some things, and then payed at the desk. I got a tuna sandwich with a chocolate milk. We sat at a table for a while and we ate, and my food was great. Then we remembered that they were going to fire a modern cannon at exactly 13:00 (they use army time throughout Europe), and it was right outside.

We rushed out with our food in our hands, just in time to see the man push the button, and a big bang rang out. They do this every day, and it wasn’t loaded with anything, but a lot of people set their watch to it, and is like a clock. Then we went in the cafe’ to finish, but after that we left the place and took the bus home. We took the rest of the afternoon off, and we got some work done for a few hours. After about 3 hours of that everyone started to get hungry, so we decided to go out for dinner. To do that we took the bus to the Royal Mile, the main street, and walked along down from the direction of the castle, to the end, to a palace. It is a cool street, but it took a while until we got to the end, with a huge building. It had two big crowns on it, and was neat. Then we walked back up to about halfway, and found a nice place to eat, an Italian spot. We walked inside and realized it was busy, so we waited a few minutes, and then got a table. I looked at the kid menu, and got a pizza with a Fanta, and a chocolate toffee ice cream for desert. A Canadian-French man took our order, and then we waited for it to come. When it did we started eating, and mine was delicious. It came with potatoes, too. When we were done with that, our desert came, which was very good, and different. Then we thanked our waiter and went home.