Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Day 5 - Edinburgh

Woke up early in the morning, had a huge breakfast at my hotel, and checked out. My hotel had the most amazing breakfast btw - a full Scottish breakfast that served haggis, fried bacon, fried sausages, fried eggs, scrambled eggs, toast, mushrooms, tomato, baked beans, cornflakes, porridge, orange juice, apple juice, yoghurt, milk, and fruits, and maybe some other stuff that I don't remember. I stayed there for 4 breakfasts, and tried to eat something different everyday, but even then I couldn't try all of it :))
Oh and some wheat cereal packet thing that I never even saw properly. And also coffee and tea. And butter and jam and marmalade.

Anyways, after that Satish and I went to Jenners which is a beautiful store at Edinburgh. They compare themselves to Harrods at London, but they aren't quite that big of course. From there I also did my first bit of shopping - dinosaur chocolates for my sis, and Belgian truffles for my mom :)

We then walked around for quite sometime, and eventually reached the Royal Museum of Scotland. It was not huge, but it was sooo beautiful, it will remain etched in my memories as the best part of my trip to Edinburgh. The highlights of the museum were the Millenium clock, which has this beautiful mechanical structure representing our millenium, the display on extinct and endangered animals, the Great Ape display (where Satish and I wore big Gorilla hands and walked on all fours), and their modern world display where we got photographs taken in space-suits.

At 5 pm Satish left to catch a train back to Edinburgh, and I walked around in the city, aimlessly for 4 hours and then went back to my hotel to collect my suitcase. By this time, I was cold, tired and hungry. And for reasons unknown, I started worrying about spending 400 Rs on dinner, and decided not to eat. Bad idea. It then got worse when I missed my bus to the bus station (where I was going to take a bus to London) by standing on the wrong side of the road, so I had to walk till the bus-station.

Unfortunately when we were walking through the city, I had never really noticed how much we used to walk, and how far away everything was. But when I had walked for 40 minutes with my suitcase, I realized that its not as small a city as I thought. Luckily, I then got a lift from a Pakistani couple who drove me in their car till the bus-station (which was another 5 minutes by car, so I was lucky I got the lift). By the time I reached the bus-station, the tiredness had left me feeling depressed and lonely and poor for the first and only time in my trip. But when I reached there, I realized that Nilesh and his junior friend were there waiting for me :), just to say a good-bye. That was very sweet of them, waiting there for me, and I got myself a coffee and ate some food from my bag, and felt all better. Life is good after all.

Got into the bus, and fell asleep instantly, only to be woken up at 2 am by the driver cause the headlights of the bus had failed, and the repairman had just got there, who wanted to see the wiring next to my seat. So I had to get out of my seat half-asleep and wait while they tinkered with the wiring. They kept trying for a full 2 hours, while a very cute guy from Spain tried to chat me up :), eventually they managed to find the problem and fix it and we were on our way.

We were supposed to reach London at 7 am in the morning, but thanks to the 2.5 hour break in between, we had to again stop at some coffee shop outside London (drivers in the UK cannot drive for more than XYZ hours at a stretch, so we had to let our driver take a break), and I finally reached London at 10:45 am.

2 comments:

  1. Wow.. I didn't know of this bus adventure.
    Well, at least you lived it up :)

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  2. Rule one of international travel :-ALWAYS pinch some (actually, lots) of the breakfast into your handbag. Whoever said 'there is nothing like a free meal' obviously never got out of his village.

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