Nearing the end

Here we are, on the downslide, and the homesickness has set in.  We love Scotland, but we’re ready to come home to our kitties and our friends and our tv and our bed.  😀

The last several days have been full of adventures.  It turns out when I mess up, I mess up royally.

We stayed in Warthill Castle Friday night and then drove 3 hours south to Broomhall Castle, where they couldn’t find our reservations.  After a short time the manager came out and explained to me that our reservations had actually been for the previous night, and right about that time I got an email from Candy at Warthill saying she was sorry she hadn’t been there to greet us, but she’d had us in for the next night.

Basically, I had switched nights and we were not only NOT going to get to stay in a second castle, where I’d made plans for a fancy romantic dinner, we were completely homeless for the night because every hotel within 20 miles was fully booked.

Yeah.  Not the high point in our lives. When I finished sobbing we found a crappy hotel far away that had one room.  It called itself a luxury golf resort but it really was wretched.  Or maybe golfers have really low standards.  We couldn’t find anything open to eat so we resorted to a pizza hut, which I have to say was a really interesting experience.  Pizza Hut is a sit-down restaurant here, and it’s really quite good.

Two days ago, we visited Stirling Castle, which was touristy but beautiful.

Yesterday, we visited the Wallace Monument, which really left a powerful impression on both of us.  It’s a beautiful building on a mountain at eye-level with Stirling Castle.  From the top, you can see all the way to Edinburgh.  It’s 256 twisty stone steps to the top, in case you were wondering.

On our way back to Edinburgh, we happened upon an amazing modern sculpture park called The Kelpies.  There is a big green, concrete and pool area from which rise two gorgeous iron horse heads, one bent down and one lifted to the sky.  These are the height of a four story building. I had read about them when they opened, but they were much more beautiful in person.

We will finish up our wonderful time here in Edinburgh.  Our final guest house is kind of craptastic, but it’s got character and it’s clean, so we’re not complaining too much.  😀  Last night, we walked down to a pub called the Conan Doyle for dinner, which is just a few houses from where Sir Arthur Conan Doyle was born and overlooks a lovely Sherlock Holmes statue.  The Doyle had amazing food, fantastic atmosphere, and we were completely won over.

Today, we wandered around the city some more and went to Edinburgh Castle.  There were throngs of people, but they were much nicer than the people at Urquhart.  Edinburgh Castle is giant, like a city of its own, and it’s really beautiful.  We got to see the Scottish Crown Jewels and the Stone of Destiny, and we were really impressed by the Great Hall.  Shortly we got too touristed out, and we needed to escape, so we went in search of some more of Chris’s ancestry and food.

We found the site where Blackwood publishing used to be, and explored used book stores in search of old copies of the magazine.  In the end, we were so tired that we actually decided to come back to the guest house instead of celebrating our anniversary out on the town.

Here we are, in our jammies, down in the reception area of the guest house because that’s the only place wifi works.  My sweet husband has his nose in his phone and I’m editing more photos.  That might not sound like romance to you, but to me it’s feeling quiet, intimate and perfect.

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