Edinburgh, Day 1

BW, Kat, Griffin and I flew out Monday evening to meet Jason, who’s been in Edinburgh for several days. Boonsboro High School’s Theater troupe got an invite to the Fringe Festival here. This is a very big deal, a terrific honor and opportunity. Jason came as one of the chaperones, and as he works in theater, a tech advisor.

Before I get into us, I have to say I’ve been following the kids on FB, and what an amazing experience they’ve had. A couple days touring London, then the long bus ride here. Four performances of their chosen play, Almost, Maine.

Just huge congrats to everyone, all the kids, all the parents and families who got behind them, the community of Boonsboro, and to Mr. Bair, the guy who works with and inspires these kids (as he did withJason) every day. (See note below.)

Our flight was smooth. I say that as someone who hates to fly. Have I mentioned that before? It bears repeating. I hate to fly. In this case, the flight was so smooth I got a solid three hours sleep, only woke once to some turbulence over the wide Atlantic where I had to use the power of my mind to keep the plane in the air.

Best of all Griffin does NOT hate to fly. He’s a traveling boy with some experience under his belt already. He loved it, crawled up and down the aisle, flirted outrageously with our flight attendant, who flirted right back.

And he conked out for a good four hours.

We landed in a drizzle, packed a van, went through Customs, did the whole round. Lots of traffic on the drive in. Jason tells me that Edinburgh is a city of about 500,000, but during August, during Fringe, that swells to 1.5 million.

A lot.

Gorgeous old buildings, dour gray and brown stone majestic in the gloom—just as it should be. Mountains and hills in the not so much distance. Sheep in the fields.

And in town buses, tons of double deckers, streets lined with those gorgeous buildings, and the grand spread of the castle on the hill.

Flowers, flowers, flowers, and green.

The main part of our suite is ready, and we’re so weary and grateful for that. We have expansive views of the city, big windows we can open enough for fresh air.

A very Edinburgh view. Photo by BW

Griffin’s happy to explore.

Some lunch in the room—I have amazing tomato and basil soup. BW and Kat get fish and chips. The fish is enormous—and enjoyed. Griffin also approves there.

Fish & chips still life. Photo by BW

Naps come next.

I get about an hour down—that’s how I like to do it.

Jason arrives—his wife and son are asleep on the couch, so we catch up.

Sensibly sleeping. Photo by Griffin’s Nana

When they wake, Griffin’s so happy to see his daddy he wants no one else. Joy.

BW and Kat are going to BHS’s last performance. I would love to see it, too, but I know with my bleary brain if I sat down in a theater, I’d wake up again at curtain call.

Ticket and program. Photo by Kat
Festival programs for the taking. Photo by BW

So they go off, and Jason, Griffin and I walk around the city. A light drizzle, busy streets. Then The Mile—shops, restaurants that becomes, as Jason puts it, a kind of temporary Times Square during the festival.

He’s not wrong.

I see some actors still in costume and makeup, lots of tourists, lots of performers buxting. We climb steep streets and steps, head down steep alleyways.

We head to BHS’s venue to meet up with BW and Kat, wait in the little lobby. We can hear some of the performance, and Jason explains the scene to me. We can also hear an enthusiastic house, and that’s gratifying.

Cheers and applause at the end for these talented kids who are now international players.

The BHS actors, plus a small special guest.

I’m ridiculously proud.

Jason peels off—he’s staying with the troupe one more night, and they’re all going to The Tattoo—the big show at the castle.

We head back, taking the most amazing (and endless) marble stairs. The Scottish Stairs have a different color of marble on each tread, each landing. Kat’s carrying Griffin, BW and I take the stroller.

Street level view. Photo by Kat

I got my workout in, for certain.

Another nap for the boy, and as Kat went out and found a wine store, some much appreciated champagne for me. A relaxed evening in, room service, early to bed.

Sustenance — by the glass, not the small spoon. Photo by Nora

Before I turn in, I hear fireworks, and look out to see the castle lit up for The Tattoo.

And sleep a solid eight.

Kat and Griffin join me in the morning right before my workout. He is a huge infusion of cuteness in his little jacket and cap.

They’d off to get batteries for one of his toys, some breakfast.

I have the bulk of my workout done when they get back, and as BW’s fighting a head cold, Kat wonders if she should go down and bring him breakfast. On his birthday, too!

We end up ordering room service again as BW rises, and Griffin does part of the workout with me.

I entertain him with the Mash-Ups on Shaun-T’s Cize program. He loves these, and laughs, snuggles, begins to fade.

A quick nap for him while we eat.

Stretches for Nana, and here’s Jason.

Griffin wakes thrilled to see Daddy.

Ready to take on the world.

We’re going to walk around, do some shopping on this marvelously sunny day. You have to take the sun when you get in here, so we will.

And we’ll see what we can see.


Editor’s note: You can read more about the BHS trip on Facebook or their You Tube Channel The energy is amazing. ~Laura

37 thoughts on “Edinburgh, Day 1”

  1. Thanks for taking us along and for daily uodates! All sounds fun so far! Here’s to a fabulous, fun and safe trip!

    1. Awwww! I left edinburgh in june after a atay of three mothes! Wish you were there at that time! I’d love to meet you!

  2. Thanks for the wonderful recap. Sounds like a great time. So proud to be from the Boonsboro area. Have a great rest of the trip.

  3. Sounds amazing so far!! Enjoy it thoroughly! Btw, love Griffin’s blue hat (is it a dinosaur? With teeth??)

  4. Great beginning to your adventure!
    I highly recommend to anyone thinking of going to Scotland, to go in August and attend the Tattoo in Edinburgh. It is a spectacle not to be missed!
    Nothing as beautiful and peaceful as a sleeping baby, and of course as a Nana also, one’s grandchildren are endearing beyond words (exception, if you are Nora Roberts, you may be able to articulate it)!

  5. Sounds absolutely wonderful! Sounds like Griffin is having a fantastic time and are the rest of you.
    Not surprised BW got a head cold. Breathing in the recycled air on a plane for 6-8 hours can make you ill.
    I’m getting AIRBORNE for all of us to take before and during our family’s trip to Hawaii in 2 weeks. That’s between 11-12 hours of flying, Don’t want anyone sick, while we’re exploring 5 of the Hawaiian islands.
    Keep posting and enjoy your vacation!

  6. Wow busy time so exciting for Jason and his kids that is so fascinating. Take lots of pictures and try to relax enjoying your posts. Have a wonderful vacation

  7. It’s so much fun to hear your families escapades and for a heartfelt reason. Can’t wait for the next update! Xx

  8. So happy to hear about Edinbourgh and envious…always wanted to go! Have a marvelous time. As I’m sure you will. griffin is so adorable!

  9. Thank you so much for sharing your vacation and family with us. Sounds like y’all are off to a spectacular start especially the joy of time with Griffin. Enjoy,have fun, and stay safe.

  10. Ohhh my, what a fun vacation this will be . . . for all of us. If you travel 49.3 miles you can visit Ferniehurst Castle (my family castle; I finally traced my ancestors back to there and more).
    Griffin, such a traveling boy.
    Enjoy and do be careful while you’re out and about.

  11. I’m so desperate to run through to Edinburgh to see if I can see Nora. I won’t but I want to. Hope you’re enjoying our country, apologies for the weather it’s doing really weird things right now.

    1. Haha, I would be the same…I love Scotland and Nora…I would pee my pants with excitement. Love from this girl in England.

  12. Kudos to those young actors!! That Fringe Festival is world famous!!!

    And, oh the day’s cuteness award certainly goes to Griffin!!!

    Happy Birthday BW!!!

  13. So jealous! We went to Scotland a few years ago. I never wanted to leave.

  14. Sounds like so much fun and that Griffin is so so cute. He’s becoming quite the traveller!

  15. Wish you were taking part in the Edinburgh Book Festival which is also on at the moment as I would love to hear you talk. Enjoy our very busy city!

  16. The McKenzie-McCoy in me is jealous. Scotland is on my bucket list (I’ve been “home” to Ireland, but …). Enjoy for all of us!

  17. What an amazing experience for the kids. Your grandson is so cute. Thank you for taking us on your vacation through your pictures.

  18. Thoroughly enjoyed my first day in Edinburgh and thank you for the champagne, fish and chips and pictures of precious Griffin…I do love his cap….looking forward to Day 2

  19. It is so thrilling to go on these travels with you! You always make it sound like we are there , also ! ( only way for me , anymore!) Griffin is growing so fast, at this age it’s by leaps & bounds…. have a terrific trip.thanks for keeping us in the loop!

  20. Wonderful photos of Edinburgh. Many kudos to the Boonsboro Troupe! What a fantastic experience for them. Griffin, as usual, looks adorable. What a blessing to have a happy baby who loves to travel! I hope BW gets over his head cold; a bummer to be sick during vacation. Climbing stairs and walking the city sounds like a perfect way to get a workout; you get the exercise while enjoying the sites and the gorgeous buildings.

  21. Hi there. My late husband was a Scot and lived in Edinburgh for ten years before coming to England in1964. We spent a lot of time there. Enjoy your time there. Plenty sites to see and good plain Scottish food to enjoy as well as foreign food.Wish I could be there Maureen Clark

  22. Thank you, Nora, for sharing your vacation with your fans. Your travelogues are always full of interesting place to see. I hope to see them first hand when my husband and I visit Scotland and Ireland next year. Enjoy both the vacation and spending time with family, especially Griffin!

  23. We loved Edinburgh in September five years ago! Enjoy walking the city.

  24. Re: B,W.’s head cold, the recycled plane air does that to many of us. I have been getting sick after every flight. No more. I bought AYR nasal mist spray, wiped down my seat area w/wipes, & bought a cotton breathable mask, that i wear over my nose & mouth. I only take it off to eat. I don’t care what i look like. The last 12 hour flight i was on proved it. No cold or sniffles!!! Now 1 thing i can’t believe- did they really let that adoarble Griffin crawl up and down the aisle?

  25. So, um . . . curious: just what books accompanied you to Edinburgh? Presuming there’s time to read, which authors are vacationing with you?

  26. Thanks for bringing us on your trip. Love the pictures of everyone.

  27. Hope y’all have a fab time in Edinburgh – I live 20 minutes away over the Forth bridge ?- the weather not being too kind just now but sounds like it’s not stopping you from being out and about!

  28. Heading to Scotland today! Birthday present to me from me. Looking forward to the Tattoo next week.

  29. Griffin has such a great smile and a happy face. He’s really a travelling baby too. I expect he’ll be walking all over creation soon. Eek!
    Big congratulations to the school kids too, What an experience for them!

  30. What an amazing adventure! And much thanks for sharing the adventure, and wonderful pictures. The effort is much appreciated. Since I have to be content with being an armchair traveler, I so enjoy your posts. Thank you.

  31. My dear Girl – I’ve followed your Books since the 1980’s when I first discovered you! Have a girlfriend in Wales & went to visit her there, several times! It’s great to mingle with the Natives! You learn so much! accents, Tea Time! Went to Ireland together! The Ring of Kerry! You must visit Dingle! I’m a Grandma too! So happy for you, Nora, after all the Joy you’ve given us! You deserve it! My Love to you always, Carol Fling

  32. I have read all your books since you began writing, some many times over! Huge fan. We, too, were in Scotland and Ireland this Past July. I must say the entire time we were driving through Ireland I thought of you and all your characters and how they would fit into the landscape. If you have never visited Abbeyglen Castle in Clifton you must add that to your agenda whenever you return to Ireland. It is simply wonderful! I look forward to your new releases.

    1. What a wonderful experience for you. I am so envious as I have Scottish ancestry and have dreamed of going there, thank you for sharing your trip and your little guy, he is beautiful! Edinburgh looks amazing and like I have always pictured it. Safe travels Nora and clan.

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