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  • Jun24

    JK Rowling, Scottish Museum, Royal Mile

    June 24 in the United Kingdom ⋅ 🌧 13 °C

    I have had a very two busy days. Monday they were calling for rain. In fact they had severe weather warnings in effect so I thought that I should stay inside. The Royal Scottish museum seemed to fit the bill. It was about a 20 minute walk from my place. It was misting and very foggy. Any views of Edinburgh were totally obscured. The Royal Scottish museum was absolutely huge. Prince Albert, Queen Victoria's husband had helped raise money in 1880 to build the building. Inside it was made of metal with sky light roofing. It was supposed to look like the Crystal Palace in London. I took two guided tours and hardly scratched the surface. I learned all about Scotland dating back to the pre Roman Scoti and Picti tribes, the effect of the Roman occupation on Scotland, the Norse who controlled northwestern Scotland after the Romans left, the Normans, Robert the Bruce, the Stewart dynasty and Mary Queen of Scots and the Jacobites. I have always had troubles keeping track of the English monarchy but it gets even more complicated when they started marrying each other and killing each other. Other curios included Dolly the cloned sheep, Ghanian coffins, Scottish camels and the millennium clock. By about 2 I had to flee the museum as I was just getting everything muddled up. I realized that I was in Blackfriars which is where JK Rowling of Harry Potter fame would hang when she was writing. Also home to Blackfriars Bobby the dog. Some of the character's from HP names are drawn from names on the graves in Kirkyard cemetary. Herriot school a prestigious private school is located beside the cemetery and was the inspiration for Hogwarts. Although I never was that into the series, my kids and one of my close colleagues loved the story so I felt compelled to go. Lots of tours being led by witch-like people wearing black and wearing capes. Elephant Cafe where she wrote some of the books was absolutely packed. I still had some energy left so I thought I would check out the entrance to Edinburgh castle for Tuesday and the Royal Mile which connects Edinburgh castle to Holyrood Palace. The RM especially around the castle was just crawling with people. I learned today when I visited the Edinburgh castle that in August it gets even busier. This time of year there are 6 thousand guests at the castle daily but during the Festival it hits 20000. They told me that there isn't even space to move. After checking out the castle entrance. The RM consisted of kilt shops, tweed shops, whiskey shops, gift shops, Harry Potter shops which seemed to just repeat themselves for th Royal Mile. After walking about half of the mile I had had enough and headed off to my Air BnB to call it a very full day.Read more