Edinburgh, U.K., 2012

Edinburgh is, apparently, part of Scotland.  On this trip I realized the meaning of the word “united” in “United Kingdom” — they are really separate countries and cultures that decided to join under one Queen.  Otherwise, the cultures are completely different from each other as are the languages.  Can’t understand Scottish accent for the life of me!

Bus from the town to the airport is only a few quid (which is apparently slang for pounds).

Trash bags on a stick and boxy “flower pot” ashtrays.

Taxi cabs, dirty buildings, and endless construction everywhere.

Britannia, her Majesty’s retired boat — one of the highlight most boring museums I have been to.

This is how the Queen used to live.  Much less impressive than what I would have imagined.

But with a harp.

And the view on some rather uninteresting constructions.  Sleeping quarters for the poor folk, it would seem; but I would not be surprised if these are some rather expensive apartments.  Actually, nothing about Britain will ever surprise me anymore.

Fake bar set.  Bottles are opened and look like there is something in them.  See the champagne glasses?  Fake!

Beautiful statue.

And constantly crappy weather, raining every 15 minutes.

Definitely low income housing.

Now there is something beautiful.

As is this, her Majesty’s boat that takes her to the shore from the yacht.

Thirteen people are all that’s needed to maintain this boat…  Sounds like alot, actually.

The docks look cleaner than the town itself.

So does an uptight little café.

With wilted flowers.

Oh, yeah, remember the fake champagne?

Beautiful old phone.

Unfortunately this is the only photo I got of the Lebowski’s pub, as in The Big Lebowski, The Dude.  Nope, absolutely nothing interesting except that they have the White Russian on special constantly but were out when I was there.

Greenery likes to live in Scotland — warm and constantly wet.

And moss everywhere.

And the proper pubs.

With a view of the castle from just about anywhere in the city.

And strip joints everywhere.  Accidentally walked into one but walked right out after being offered “three quid for a pip”.

Nice here.

Even the modern corporate buildings look stuffy.

Somehow the trees do not make the place any livelier.

No smiles, even in the double-decker.

Ah, the GrassMarket Street.  Every road takes you there.

Ah, yes, just like most of Europe, the kitchens are not 24/7 like in USA.  There is lunch time and then there is dinner time.  Be thankful that it is a three-hour window and not just an hour!  Any this is on a very busy tourist street…  Europeans have a very different business sense from Americans.

Typical view.

Again, typical view.

Oh, and they put an ugly stadium right onto the castle walls…

And toilets, too.

The Royal Mile.

And the local police.

Ah, this is truly a magnificent idea!  The painting, the main one, is a TV and it occasionally, ever so slightly, moves around…

Whiskey tour.  And scotch, naturally.

Yeah…  Tourist traps.

But, get to taste scotch and learn a few interesting things about the meaning of “single malt” and the different regions it comes from.

After this I am firmly convinced that I like my choice of J&B.

Interesting chandelier.

And another typical side window.

Back to the Royal Mile.

At any time, press yellow button… to get what, exactly?

And crappy pavement in most of the city.

I wonder if Apple ever sued these guys?

Indeed.  A hawk and a rat.

And the Scottish garbage.

And the people.

But the frescos are nicely detailed.

And the stained glass windows.

And the organ.

And the knights.

How often do you see a young female harmonica player?!

But why three?

And the tour of the underground city.  Actually, U.K. is full of the ghost tours by untalented street performers.

This is the entrance to the secret underground passage where ghosts from a thousand years ago live.

But has the most adorable trash can.

And sometimes feels like the Blair Witch.

In a cemetery.

At night.

In the bushes.

By the castle.

With a view.

It’s good I decided not to bring my inline skates here.

They really knew how to build back then, didn’t they?

But this horrendous stadium is an eyesore.

Quite an impressive gun.

The city did not change much since 1560s (with the exception of the horrid stadium).

Look at the map above and the view out of the window.  Same thing, basically.

The castle is quite high up there.

They really did know how to build back in the day.  The wood and the stone craftsmanship is superb.

And the large “walk-in” fireplaces are something out of a dream.

I stayed at the Sheraton so quite a nice view for me [had my windows been on this side].

Went out and saw a band at a local pub.  Was a big event; too bad the band was from USA.

Construction works are literally everywhere in the city but I think this is the only time I saw some activity and actual workers there.

And I’m off to Liverpool next.  So far I was not too impressed with U.K.

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