Edinburgh, Scotland: Greyfriars Kirkyard, New Town & Water Of Leith…

Breaking free from the chains of my everyday nothingness, Edinburgh helped me keep moving forwards. Making no mistakes, I had been informed about a faithful dog who followed his owner until his dying day, immortalised in statue form I had to seek that out! New town, who? Edinburgh's partitioned city centre halves had two different time periods, I needed to know! Oh!

Pressing reset, I had just climbed down from the castle's heights to find the Grassmarket. Before I met with the timeless looking West Bow & Victoria Street I was stopped dead in my tracks! Little 'Bobby' dog had been brought to my attention by a comedic contact from Instagram, 'Don't Mess With Denise' informed about a key attraction near the castle that I had to seek out! That challenge had been accepted because who say's 'no' to one of Sheffield's toughest mothers! You just cannot! Using my trusted 'Apple Maps', I found the graveyard that had been used to film part of the Harry Potter films? I was looking for that damn dog! I'll take that back because outside the 'Greyfriars Bobby' pub, I found the cutest black dog in statue form, getting my photo had to be done because the 'tourists' were loosing their minds! 'Bobby' was formerly owned by 'John Gray' who was a 'nightwatchman' for Edinburgh City Police, after John's death 'Bobby' would run from the house where he was being looked after to guard his former owners grave. B!

If the story of 'Bobby' doesn't move you then you've got a frozen heart, even with my steely cold heart I found the sorrow that the dog felt truly upsetting. It was majorly touching that 'Bobby' would run down to 'John's' grave to be close to him everyday, the fact he knew the way and disobeyed his new owners didn't stop him being close to his former owner. Greyfriars 'Bobby' died on January 14th 1872, he was 16 years old when he passed after spending much of his 'canine' life devoted to 'John'. After 'Bobby's' death in 1872, he was designated his own grave that stood outside the church on the grounds within 'Greyfriars Kirkyard'. I was so very glad that 'Denise' had told me about that famous dog that loved his owner even after his time was up, that is some true love story that almost got me choked up. Ey! The pub named after that lovely dog hadn't opened, I needed a glass of something strong to deal with that heartfelt doggy love story! Moving forwards, I kept the sentiment of that story close to me because it was precious! Denise! 

Edinburgh's New Town has UNESCO World Heritage status? Yes, it absolutely does have that claim to excellence with stamped receipts for those to view, eat it up! During my 'Haggis' chow down, the lady at the 'Haggis Box' had answered one of my questions about how the New Town had came to be with its regal style? With the older, much older 'Old Town' causing much of a stench, those who had the coin wanted to move somewhere that didn't smell like the bottom of a sewer. I asked if the 'New Town' had been built by the English? No, it was very much a Scottish architectural masterpiece! I stood corrected! Alright? Standing in St. Andrew's Square had me clocking those period buildings, they had a certain 'Neo-Classical' and 'Georgian' style to them! The 26 year old James Craig had been awarded the project to create Edinburgh's 'New Town', that was in 1766 when that city expansion first started north of the North Bridge. In the present day time, Mr. Craig's structures impressed me much even though some changes had been made. 

The August sunshine blessed Edinburgh's 'New Town Gardens' as I stood within St. Andrew's Square, I counted it as my sixth place visited during that first full day in the Burgh! I couldn't lie, it was amazing to see the people out in the gardens enjoying the weather, Scotland was still living under some 'COVID Restrictions' so many signs reminded people that they needed to respect other people's space. Even still, keeping personal distance should be a rule that is carried on after Miss Rona decides to up and leave us, when's that going to be? Real talk! The tower that stood in front of me was another memorial, well it was the 'Melville Monument'. Towering over Edinburgh's New Town Gardens, the 'Melville Monument' commemorates 'Henry Dundas' who was also known as the first 'Viscount Melville'. Melville was best known for campaigning the abolition of the slave trade, now that was some history lesson! Edinburgh's New Town was schooling me like never before! Where's the money? Where were those million pound hooses?

People usually like to stick to the tourist map, I like to veer away from the plan so I can find places that aren't famous! What was so special about 'Circus Lane?' How long do you have? Seriously! I could have walked to 'Dean Village' but what else would I have to do once that famous photo had been saved to my iPhone photo album? That was the question entirely! I did not feel the need to be a sheep, I was sure that breaking away from the usual tourist route would reveal something different. That wasn't a question! No! Looking past 'Dean Village', I found 'Circus Lane' after doing some 'New Town' research. Upon leaving 'St. Andrew's Square', I followed my iPhone map as closely as I could. The walk from the noise to 'Circus Lane' had me passing some fancy 'Georgian' looking townhouses, damn they looked fancy! Remembering that 'Circus Lane' was home to people had me conscious as I took photos of the million pound houses. Those properties looked pint-sized but regardless of their size, but was their price tag?

Seeing where the other half lived in Edinburgh, the calmness of 'Circus Lane' had me thinking how packed would 'Dean Village' be during that Summer afternoon? I did not need to think about that situation! Noo! For me, 'Circus Lane' took me right back to the exclusive white-washed houses in Itaewon, Seoul because quiet exclusiveness had me thinking about those houses in the Seoul hills that had showcased such riches. It wasn't Seoul but the modern frontages that some of the houses had reminded me of those that oozed 'money' and I didn't need anybody to tell me anything different! No! From my hostel pod, the day had been long, being my seventh place seen I wasn't tiring but yeah I was a little bit if I was honest. Edinburgh had kept the day's weather dry and bright, I managed to march from from sight to another without any issues. 'Circus Lane' gave me that slice of 'where am I?' I had one more place to see before I would allow myself to head back over to the Old Town to my hostel. E, try and stop me! 


Connected to 'Dean Village' was the 'Water Of Leith', a body of water that allowed me to make a competent connection with my first visit to Scotland's capital. No, it wasn't going to be the same view at 'Ocean Terminal' because I was taking things closer to the city of Edinburgh, giving myself enough distance from the 'Royal Yacht Britannia'. Finding the 'Water Of Leith' walkway had me feeling made up, I had made it to the eight and final port of call for that super packed day out. The water resembled a trickle rather than the river like waterway I had envisaged before I had set eyes upon it. I wasn't pressed, the view that I was afforded was a slice quieter than I had previously imagined. It was quiet and the surroundings had me feeling content because I didn't need to worry about people walking into my chosen photo for this section. My view of Leith's water put me at ease, I didn't need to spend an awful lot of time at this final stop because my photo taken had me nodding with approval. Where was my hostel poured pint? Like, really?

Content with the 'Water Of Leith' that momentary reminder of my first visit to the city, of course that 2009 event had been elevated to a 2021 state of mind for certain! There were no bones about that interaction, time had passed me by but I had returned to Edinburgh with the first visit in mind. I wasn't about to waste time, I didn't need to revisit every single sight from those two previous trips, it was about finessing those experience to make it count during that post-Lockdown moment! The day had been long, with my early start and mid taken care of during the previous 'Destination:' post, this second edition of that bumper day has had me feeling very reflective because I made it happen regardless of the 30,000 odd steps that were walked. Edinburgh's 'Greyfriars Kirkyard', 'New Town' & 'Water Of Leith' served me everything and more, each place visited had been investigated with care and precision. Being the 'grind time, prime time', I made no mistakes during that Edinburgh day of discovery. Edinburgh, I'm done! 

Oh, Bobby Dog!

Joseph Harrison 

Comments

  1. I'd love to explore Edinburgh, it looks incredible! I'm also like you and I like to sway away from the tourist path x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Della, thank you for your comment!

      Yes, veering away from what the masses choose do is what make it right!

      Edinburgh was lovely!

      Joseph - Desperately Seeking Adventure

      Delete
  2. It's been a while since I've been up to Edinburgh, but it's a great place to visit. So much to see and so many place to visit. Thanks for sharing your visit with us :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for your comment!

      Edinburgh was a treat!

      Joseph - Desperately Seeking Adventure

      Delete
  3. That Bobby😭💕 How sweet! You definitely showed many sides to Edinburgh but my favorite has to be Bobby💕

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    Replies
    1. It was a really touching story, a random suggestion from a friend from Insta.

      It was a very insightful morning.

      Thanks for you comment!

      Joseph - Desperately Seeking Adventure

      Delete

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