After the six hour bus ride (and thank God because it’s the only reason I got my homework done…) we arrived in the rain to Prince’s Street and our hotel. My first day was comprised of the Royal Mile, which our hotel was very conveniently located near, and getting appetizers and drinks at a few different pubs.
Pictured to the right is the bottom of the Royal Mile, with a view of Parliament and Arthur's Seat.
The next morning we left early, but the trip was not done at Edinburgh. Some students went independently to save money, but I thought the three side-trips on the way back were worth the money. The first we stopped was the Scotland-England border. After that brief photo opportunity we went to Hadrian’s Wall and the Housesteads’s Fort ruins. Built around the year 122 AD, the Wall was meant to keep the northern tribes out and enforce the area of Rome’s control. This old border is actually about an hour south of the current one.
It seems like everywhere I go there are still traces of Rome.
The last stop was in Durham for lunch. We also walked up the hill to see the famous Cathedral, which was once used as a refuge for fugitives of the law. They were given a little over a month to get their affairs in order before they had to turn themselves in or flee the country.
There wasn’t enough time for us to see the castle, as well. However I did learn an important lesson in this town. “Marinara” in Europe is literal--there is seafood involved. It will be one of those little travel adventures I get to warn fellow students about.
Another hour or two on the bus and we were home. Overall, a full weekend. I can’t believe how much we’re doing! It seems like far longer than a week since I was in Stratford, longer than a few days since Lincoln. It’s a testament to how busy we are and how intense the academics and travel is that time has taken on an alien quality to most of the students here. I can only imagine what it will be to look back on all we've accomplished and seen in December.