Thursday, May 20, 2004

Marcus Meets Europe! -- Scotland

Edinburgh Castle

The academics of studying abroad reared its ugly head, so I'm back in Norwich taking an exam for UEA. I was able to squeeze in one more destination, Edinburgh. The ride was great while it lasted.

I couldn't have asked for a better view. Castle Rock Hostel is immediately below Edinburgh Castle, allowing one to look at history every morning. A lot of the guests were long-term stayers, meaning Australians working for British pounds. They made the hostel a lot of fun to stay in.

I went on a free walking tour of Edinburgh. My favorite place we stopped at was the Parliament House. There was a large room called the Great Hall, a.k.a. "The Hall of Whispers." Lawyers would come in pairs to walk side by side, from one end of the room to the other, discussing their cases in whispers. The legal profession never looked so important and prestigious.

After the tour was over, I accompanied the two Canadian girls I met on the tour to Edinburgh Castle. I had a great time looking from the turrets and imagining myself defending the castle against my enemies. We got to see the Crown Jewels, which were in a glass case. The security guard kept anyone for taking pictures. The War Museum was an action movie fan's dream come true. Display after display of military uniforms, suits of armor, swords scored from clashing with other swords, old and new machine guns, it was awesome.

We arranged to meet up later with our tour guide at Rush, a bar in Cowgate. I looked at the menu of shooters. I ignored the drink names and focused on the ingredients. One drink had Kalhua, Bailey's, and cream. We have a winner. I called the female bartender over. "Yes, I'd like one . . ." What was the drink called? My eyes flicked back to the menu. "Give me a Blow Job please." The words were out of my mouth before I knew what I had said. I blushed a deep red. She smiled and made me the drink.

The Canadian girls, the tour guide, and I later went to a music bar. A band performed live rock, mostly covers. One of the Canadian girls kept buying me drinks, despite my protests about staying sober. She said she'd call me a cab if I really needed it. I wondered whether she was really that nice or just wanted to get me drunk. The last stop was The Liquid Room, a nightclub. The dance floor was small, so it reminded me of high school. I got my dance on, and all had a good time.

My biggest regret was that I didn't give myself enough time to see more of Scotland. I missed the Highlands and Loch Ness, because they were too far from Edinburgh. That bummed me out, because I really wanted to see that monster!