“I’m thinking of taking a week off before the crazy rush starts” I said to Husband at the end of May. It’s true – I don’t get to take any leave from July to October as this is our insanely busy period, so I like to start with a week at home doing nothing. Build up my energy to battle the summer.
“Great idea!” Husband replied. “Let’s go to Edinburgh!”
It wasn’t on my list (which consisted largely of ‘sitting around in my PJs’), but why the hell not. So we scoured the internet for some good hotel deals, found literally nothing, and settled on the somewhat above budget Doubletree Hilton. We booked the cheaper travel option – a 4.5 hour train journey from Kings Cross – and after leaving the house at 8am on Sunday morning, we found ourselves all checked in and eating our complimentary warm cookie by 4pm.
We had a view of… some crappy buildings which was a little disappointing, but the room was so quiet that we really didn’t mind. Plus, we could pretend we were on an exclusive floor as the top floor was just for Hilton rewards programme members (allegedly). VIP!
I was feeling pretty yucky from the train, which was a perfectly decent journey and didn’t feel that long at all, so I quickly jumped into the bath. Grime free, we wandered out into a slightly overcast but humid Edinburgh to find some dinner.
As we walked towards Grassmarket, the area seemed familiar which was odd as I’ve never been to Edinburgh before but I soon realised why. I had seen this area on a Channel 4 documentary about strippers – LOVELY! The area is “home to three lap-dancing bars: the highest concentration of strip clubs anywhere in the UK”. In all honesty, yes it felt seedy but we weren’t too worried. It might have been different if we were there at a weekend, but if it wasn’t for the neon, you wouldn’t even know they were there on a week day.
This photo is a slight lie as it was taken the second day, but this is the view we had of Edinburgh Castle from around our hotel. It was a little surreal looking up and seeing it there! We decided to visit the next day, but for now, on to the pub.
We folded ourselves into a corner of the Holyrood 9A. Husband had a porter, I had my usual soft drink, and we both had yummy burgers. The sweet potato fries I had were amazing and I slightly regret not ordering five portions, but if I had done that, I wouldn’t have had space for the Chockabocker Glory sundae. Heavenly. I fell in love with the silver stag heads on the wall and decided I wanted to put them up at home, give our living room a Hannibal feel. I loved this pub, and all the staff were super friendly. It was the first of many great customer service experiences.
We waddled back to the hotel room (passed the strip clubs) and back to the hotel where we sunk into the dreamy mattress for a peaceful night sleep.