So in Edinburgh the streets are nowhere near as easy to follow as in London (where you also have the handy Tube to use). Consequently, we were " 'splorin' " the town for a good while before we found a nifty tour bus to hop on so we could get places. We got our exercise, for sure. We took the bus up to Edinburgh Castle and went through it, seeing all the nifty historical things etc. we saw St. Margaret's Chapel and the Great Hall, as well as where they used to keep the prisoners, which looked a lot like where they used to house the troops (possibly because it was the same PLACE). Ick, definitely would not have wanted to be a soldier (or prisoner) in that gloomy place. anyway, the castle was really big, kind of Tower-of-Londonesque, and these Scots took their defenses pretty seriously. The walls were about 6 feet thick. Then we took a nice stroll along the Royal Mile and got the bus again, which we rode around the city to Waverley Bridge, where we got off to search for food that didnt cost £8 or more per person (which is about $12 American). We found Ryan's Bar just as it started to pour outside, but they had a nifty little eating area that was glassed in, so we got to watch everyone outside being rained on while we ate in the nice dry place :) Then it stopped raining and we wandered around the city for a bit before going to our hostel for the night. We needed to do laundry, so we went to buy detergent and they informed us (which they hadnt before) that it was only open til 11 (it was 10:18). So we had to wash our clothes and then leave them going in the drier overnight (£1.20). We did.
Ok, so we MEANT to get up at 7am and get our laundry all taken care of, as we had to be out of there by 10am. hmm....so we woke up at 9:56 am....riiiight. Yeah, so we had to run around like crazy people getting our stuff together and rescuing our (still damp) laundry, as if you are there past 10 you get charged £10. so in the laundry we pleaded with the person doing hostel-sheets and she let us use the dryer for another 1/2 hr, which was very kind of her. We took a stroll to the train station as per our new routine and also got these Heavenly pastries with chocolate and cream inside. MMMM. Once our laundry was all done we set off for Holyrood Palace, which was all we had time to see b/c the train for Inverness took off at 13:40. So we went to the Palace, where the Queen and Royal-type people all stay when they are in town. The guy in plaid pants told us that the Queen was there 2 mos ago, and Prince Charles 2 weeks ago, and Prince Phillip was coming next week. So we got to pretend we were being all royal and stuff since we were there too. :oD Anyway, there were many nice tapestries and fancy dishes and the Queen's private dining room was pretty nifty, but i don't know that i'd actually want to meet the Queen...i think i'd probably forget and sit down in her presence, which the plaid-pants guy informed me would land me in the Tower of London. I've been THERE, and it ain't that nice a hotel.
We also saw Holyrood Abbey, which had no roof, as it had collapsed. It was pretty neat though, and there were even some (creeepy) open (empty) stone coffins that they had dug up I guess. Then we made a run for the train and made it with 5 min to spare. we had to take a train and then due to storm damage had to take a 4.5 hr BUS to Inverness. I ended up next to a guy from Reno who was taking a little post-high school trip around europe. fun. when we got to Inverness we easily found our hostel which had a private (yay) room, and quizzed our host, Andrew, about the town (since our guide book didn't deign to mention it). Then we found Cafe 1, which turned out to have AMAzing food. Hmm, is it me, or do our days have a lot to do with food? Anyway, it was amazing and we had a good time there, after which we went to sleep to the sounds of the 1 am construction crew (really, i think they were out there all night.)
Day 11: And here we are in the library again, after posting some cards and locating the bus station. and my time is once again up.