Day one for this trip encompasses the Sunday I left Austin and the Monday that I arrived in Edinburgh. As international travel always includes a bending of time, as my body is currently fully suffering the consequences of. Ten hours of travel through six different time zones will cause an effect on just about anyone.
The arrival at the Austin airport was filled with F1 traffic. In fact, I would be hard pressed to remember a time that the Austin airport was busier. It was filled with people dressed just like they were out at the track. I took full advantage of my time there with tacos from Taco Deli before my trip. There was a slight delay of about 20 minutes because of winds on the route in for the aircraft. I wasn’t too worried because that meant those same winds would push us and they were still estimating the same arrival time. Which was good because I had a tight layover at Heathrow before my flight to Edinburgh.
In the aircraft, I was happy to find it wasn’t over full and the seat between the gentleman and myself was open. This made for a good flight but when I went to go plug into the outlet I discovered nightmare number one. This plane was old enough that there was no outlet, power, USB, or otherwise on the craft. Now if you are like me the short flights you don’t worry about. The longer flights mean that you need power, games, audiobooks, and other ways to distract yourself from sitting in a seat that is too small and under-cushioned for ten hours is a necessity. To improvise I removed my watch and phone. Turned their power off and turned on the in-flight movie. The screen in the back of the seat was smaller and way less sharp but that was ok. All I needed was noise from the storyline to drift off to sleep, and I did. All in all, we made good time, I was awake for about the first 30 minutes, and then after an hour nap, I awoke for dinner. I struggled a little bit but did fall back asleep halfway through a second movie. I awoke a few hours out from London for breakfast.
Once we got to Heathrow it seems the winds had not smiled on us and we were still about 20 minutes delayed. Because of this delay, we had to circle London once before we could get into the pattern to land. This put us about 40 minutes late getting into Heathrow and left me with an hour and twenty minutes to get off the plane, through border security, through recheck security and through the terminal to my connecting flight. Could I do it??? Yes and with time to spare a stop by Pret A Manger for an apple soda and jam croissant. Thank you, Heathrow for having it all together. (and for not landing in the border agents line who was harassing everyone… even the Canadian lady. Seriously, dude, Brexit is moving forward I know but tone down the xenophobia.) The jaunt to Edinburgh was uneventful as I had turned off my phone and watch until London. Thankfully I had battery left on them to make it through the terminal and present my ticket. Once arrived I pulled my coat and gloves out of my carry on. I could tell already through the jetway that the wind was out of control. That might of explained why we landed in Edinburgh sideways. I thought the pilot just was trying a drift maneuver. My luggage was one of the last to come out so I had to stand in line for a taxi longer than I wanted to but I was here, no rush needed. The drive through town was pleasant and the Taxi driver and I talked F1 the whole way. Evidently, the whole of the UK was watching as Hamilton is hated despite consistently winning even over here. At Quartermile I checked into my hotel. The Residence Inn is nice but I prefer the Sheraton better because of the bathtub.
After some relaxation, I went out for coffee and to explore. I ended up in some familiar areas like Victoria Street, Grassmarket, and the Royal Mile, I also explored more and found myself in parts of Old Town that I hadn’t walked yet. On the way back I stopped at Frankenstein’s Pub. This is a German Frankenstein theme pub that is housed in a 19th-century church (1818 according to the plaque out front). Also claims to be the original “Horror Pub”. The beer was good and so was the Fish and Chips.
Exhausted after walking 5+ miles and traveling I went back to the hotel room, cranked up the thermostat and put on a movie to fall asleep too.