Edinburgh Day 2

Edinburgh Travel Blog

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Edinburgh Day 2: 10/25/07

My second day in Edinburgh was spent mostly up at the Edinburgh Castle . For 11 pounds I was going to see it all! There is a lot of very interesting exhibits to see on the grounds of Scotland , including the Crown & jewels, along with the Stone of Scone. At 13:00 hours they fire a single shot off from a canon. I could go on and on about all the sights at this place; after all I did end up spending three hours at the place. Feeling toured out and tired of walking around in queues I began my walk down the Royal Mile. At the end of the mile is Palace of Hollyroodhouse . This is the residence of the Royal Family when they are in town. By this time I was ready for a little sit down back at the hostel. That night I headed out for the City of the Dead tour. This tour visits a graveyard that has one of the best well documented poltergeist in the world. Over the last 9 years that the tour has been in operation 180 people have been knocked clean out by the poltergeist, many have been scratched and hit as well. They have a big warning before the tour about all this and will not take young children along. At this point many on the group are now looking around seeing of other are going to walk away. No one wants to be the first person to leave the tour, especially when everyone can see that you are leaving. The tour guide then began to tell the wonderful sunny stories of how nice it would have been to live in Edinburgh 400 ago. I will leave out the gruesome details, but needless to say this city was literally ankle deep in itself. He told us the fashion of high heeled shoes comes from Edinburgh because of the deplorable conditions; one would want as much distance from themselves and the muck they had to walk through. He then went straight into describing how they would have fun in Edinburgh ; accusing people of witchcraft was the best entertainment around. One most impressive torture methods involved a rat, a cage that had one opening which was placed against your chest and hot coals that were placed into the cage along with the rat. Use your imagination what happens next. This went on until they figured out rats had many bad diseases on them so they then started to use cats. At about this time one of the young guys from the group made a quick exit leaving his friends behind to wonder what was going on. All this excitement and the tour really had yet to begin. We then departed off for the cemetery. Along the way we passed the café where Harry Potter was thought up. Arriving at the cemetery our guide gave us a bit of more history about the cemetery. Nearly 500,000 people are buried in this very small cemetery. After tramping along through the dark cemetery dodging headstones left and right we made our destination. Before the guide would unlock the gate to let us back to the crypts he once again gave everyone a warning about proceeding further. A few people stayed behind, I was quite shocked to see some of the people who were staying back. We walked back to the crypt that is the epicenter of this most thoroughly documented poltergeist. Inside it was not bigger than 12*12 with about a 9ft ceiling. The guide asked for the tall people to enter first. Everyone stood there just looking into the pitch black crypt. I finally said, “Lets rock!” and made my way through the crowd and was the first into the pitch black. I settled in at that back and watched the crypt fill in with bodies. The tour guide then stood in the doorway and began to tell us about the poltergeist and what we may experience. Now this I knew was using the power of suggestion to make people feel even more uncomfortable and be open to persuasion. After a bit one person went running out they tossed up whatever they had for dinner outside of the crypt. I was now starting to see movement amongst all the small people in front of me. This was just below my sightline and the movement was moving about the people. Right about this time there was a muffled mooing sound coming from my left. It was the gentlemen standing next to me; his cell phone was mooing. Few of us got a good laugh over that one. The guide went on to tell us the different levels of poltergeist activity. At this time a person came running in going..Ahhhhhhhhh!!! Just about everyone screamed and jumped. I heard the rapid foot steps on the gravel outside before he hit the doorway, and expecting something like this I was not startled one bit. After that everyone got a good laugh over how everyone jumped and screamed. The guide said that they do this so everyone has a laugh, because poltergeist feed off fear so they were helping lighten the mood.

This was the end of the tour; a few of us decided to stay behind in the graveyard and look for the grave of Thomas Riddell. I was not quite sure who this was but I just used the excuse to walk around in this cool graveyard. Behind the graveyard is the building that inspired Hogwarts School .

Well that was plenty of action for one night; tomorrow I am off for a good hike.     

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Edinburgh
photo by: vances