December 14, 2019

9.00 pm: Late rise. What the heck! Strange kitchen. ‘How do you turn the oven on? Is there a non-stick saucepan for our porridge (which is now promoted as a post-election blues upper)?’ Washed-up, booked dinner, scouted for churches in advance of tomorrow. 10.45am: Out onto the streets.

The Park Run was underway on The Meadows. First stop: the knittery:

It was good to talk to locals about living in the city. To my mind, Edinburgh is as much a European as it is a Scottish city: at one and the same time self-identifying, connected, and outward looking. A young man entered the shop carrying his finger-knitting. It looked like the kind of net structure that fishermen might have conceived. After an hour I craved sustenance:

Onwards to the Surgeons’ Hall Museum (a no-photography zone) to ogle at extracted and preserved examples of every physical affliction known to humankind. Pick your death, as it were. I came away counting my blessings:

Following a further coffee restorative, we headed for Greyfriars Kirkyard. It’s reputedly the most haunted cemetery in the UK. The Covenanters’ Prison, therein, has been the site of numerous violent poltergeist attacks on visitors:

I’m drawn to this place; it has a ‘presence’. When I attended a ghost tour here back in 2011, I took a Bible with me; I wasn’t taking any risks.

Over the road from there was the National Museum of Scotland:

We gravitated to the Scottish history and design technology sections. My sympathy for the cause of independence grows. I fell for a 1955, covert radio/Morse code device. All grey, with recessed knobs and buttons. It’s design aesthetic transcended its militaristic function.

5.45 pm: We ate dinner at a seafood restaurant that had other things besides on the menu for folk who, like me, can’t abide seafood. Haggis Bonbons substituted!:

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December 13, 2019
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