Friday, August 16, 2019

I had a slightly earlier breakfast and was rewarded with getting to lock in my deal for self-guided taxi excursions with David and Debbie Schwartz.  We’ve now exchanged cabin numbers. I did my email, went to the gym and got off around noon in South Queensferry.  It was a tender port but the tenders were “shoreside tenders’, meaning they were sightseeing boats, a lot more comfortable than our lifeboats.  I got a bus to the middle of Edinburgh for 9 pounds.  It was a real bargain.  It left from each end every twenty minutes and could be used on any of the company’s buses for the whole day, except the HOHO.  It left us off at St. Andrews Square, facing Harvey Nichols, across the street.

I started with a little retail therapy, ‘though I didn’t buy a thing.  When you are at your max weight, there isn’t much that flatters you.  I liked the design of one dress, enough to pay the price for it, but it was in battleship green, a color that only makes me look fatter still.  With my wallet intact, I went back outside and headed towards the High Street.  It was just starting to sprinkle, but it didn’t take long to get a lot nastier, wind and rain in the face kind of nasty.  I whipped around, dove back into Harvey Nichols and up to the fourth floor for lunch.  The smoked salmon on a bagel was delicious, but the rocky road brownie thing was terrible, which saved me from eating it.  It had looked so good, too.

Back out on the street, at about three, the weather was gorgeous, and I completed my journey across the Waverley Bridge and up to the High Street.  There were people everywhere.  It was Fringe.  I think they boasted of more than 500 venues.  This is the ancestor of all Laugh Festivals, and there were comedy shows everywhere, with touts vying for my attention.  I really wanted to see the one with the turquoise flyer.  But no one offered me that.20190816-01EdinburghFringeHelenSmall So I chose the one that was starting in fifteen minutes, just down the block.  The gal’s name was Njambi McGrath, with the “N” silent.  She was born in Kenya and met her husband at University in New York City.  A “Coconut”, I learned, is brown on the outside and white on the inside.  They must have learned this from the HK Chinese, who called the ABCs, BBCs and CBCs, “Bananas”20190816-04EdinburghFringeNjambiMcGrathsmall


She was hysterical, and she made you think, and I couldn’t have chosen better, had I done it on purpose.  It was after five, when I got back out on the street, so I did a bit more of High Street, and noted I was very close to the Castle, and the venue of the famous Edinburgh Tattoo.  I was giving that a miss, as I feared I might just be spending a bunch of money to make my cough worse.  I watched the pipes and drums, Scottish fiddler and dancers from the comfort of the show lounge.

August 17 was our last day at sea, I went to my desk.  A couple did stop by and they told me about the Tattoo Experience.  It was excellent but it started to pour at 10:00 pm and everyone got very wet.  Taking back-to-back DVs is brilliant.  I got almost all my work for the next one done today.  I also got a nice free upgrade to a Vista Suite, so I am looking forward to that on the next leg, Iceland and Greenland.  Gotta see it before it melts.