Here’s a much better view of Newtown. You can see that the streets are wide and the buildings aren’t so tall. In the distance is the Firth of Forth, Edinburgh’s gateway to the sea. There’s actually an amazing railway bridge over the Forth, but I didn’t get a good shot of it.
Looking to the east from the castle, you can see Arthur’s Seat, which is an extinct volcano that looms over the city. Climbing the hill is a favorite tourist pasttime, but Snookums and I weren’t feeling particularly athletic on this visit. We settled on admiring the hill from a distance.
This rather imposing line of cannons looks out towards Princes Street. At the very end, almost facing towards us at this point, are three more modern guns. One of them is fired every day except Sunday at 1:00 p.m. so that ships in the Firth can set their clocks.
Snookums admires some of Edinburgh’s newer architecture. Our cabbie from the airport Friday night took great pride in telling us that Edinburgh is now one of the world’s most popular locations to host conferences. Judging by the amount of cranes I saw, the city is indeed booming.
ARGH! Here I am with the perfect spot to capture the 1:00 gun going off. I snapped this one as a “before” shot and then put down the camera for two seconds to push my hair out of my face. Of course, the gun went off in that very instant and I nearly jumped out of my skin. *sigh* Just imagine a loud noise and a big puff of smoke coming out of the gun.
Up at the top of the castle is a curious little cemetery… for the pets of the officers. The castle is still manned by a garrison of soldiers, and this is obviously a special and well-kept little spot. There are several dogs buried here going back centuries.