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Tuesday, 5 July 2016

A free walking tour


While in Edinburgh, we took a free walking tour around part of the old town and strolled to a point where we could view the new town.  Our guide was a stocky Scotsman dressed in a kilt, who announced if we didn't like him swearing during his talk, he didn't 'give a fuck'.
On the Royal Mile is this heart in the footpath.  In former times, a prison existed just metres away.  Sometimes, people were imprisoned for 'trivial' things, like stealing a loaf of bread.  If locals thought a person's imprisonment was unjust, they would spit within the heart.  Time passed, the prison disappeared, but the tradition lived on.  Today, it is said you can spot the locals by those who spit within the heart as they pass along the footpath.
In the vicinity here, Scottish writers wrote their famous novels, poetry etc.  Our guide told us Robbie Burns was not a very nice wee chappie.  He thought nothing of picking up women, having sex with them and dumping them soon after.  He was infatuated with women's pubic hair and wrote poetry about it.  The guide said all of Edinburgh became passionate about pubic hair and purchased pubic hair wigs.
From here, we could see down onto the new town.  From about the 1730s onwards, the new town was constructed over thirty years.
Those on our walking tour hailed mainly from America and Australia.

The Queen's Gallery is near Holyrood Palace.
A statue of King Charles II.  Our guide liked him because he said the King was an early feminist.
Lone Scotsmen entertain passers by with bagpipe music.
Although this has nothing to do with the walking tour or anything else, I thought I'd include this here because it's amusing.  The above is one of the horrendous skylights featured in our apartment in Edinburgh.  One like the above - the size of a bath tub - was in the ceiling above my bed.  During the summer months, during long hours of daylight, a skylight above your head can be unbearable.  In Neil and Carolyn's room next door, they suffered the same kind of skylight.  See below for Neil's solution.
Neil's solution to the god awful skylights above your pillow.  He placed a mop and a broom in the space, together with bedding, blankets etc.

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