Monday, August 13, 2007

Greyfriars Bobby

The balloon-tier's art: Homer and Blow-Me Elmo.

The combination of all my street exploration, festival-going, late-night blogging and probably some 24-hour bug laid me a bit low this morning. I just kept crawling back into bed, unable even to read for more than a few pages without a rapid fade to black.

Eventually I rolled out onto the footpath, hoping to get Bondi out for a good walk since I have a busy schedule tomorrow: MOT for the car and 3 shows spread from 1pm till after midnight.

This afternoon I spent a bit more time over on the south side of the Old Town, which I'd not really looked at since my visit here in 2005, when we stayed on Argyle St, walking across the Meadows each morning.

As much as I like Edinburgh, Scotland is not really a dog-friendly place when looked at in terms of its civic attitudes. Dog friendly accommodation is much harder to secure than below the border and there's a general defeatist air of "oooh we have health and safety issues of having a dog near our shops, park, cemetery etc". While many Scots may complain of rules and regulations coming from London and Brussells, on this score they have only themselves to blame. Maybe total devolution would render them into a complete nanny state: beware of what you wish for...

At least on the (privately owned) Lothian buses, I have the opportunity to engage in conversation with fellow riders every trip and because I usually park Bondi in the wheelchair/pram bay if it's unoccupied, there's a queue of people who stoop to rub his head on the way out.

The buses can be quite entertaining in themselves. In a week I've witnessed several near fist-fights and overheard a few soaks engaged in not-so-private conversation with imagined companions. Today I thought they should provide a big running wheel at the back of the bus, so that one half of the passengers can run off their madness like caged hamsters, while the other half sit back and dream of their homes in Poland. :-P

Bobby's grave; His Master's grave

Grave regulations.

I took Bondi back to pay his respects to Greyfriars Bobby, and on exiting the graveyard noticed that the City of Edinburgh has passed regulations which would deter further dogs from honouring, mourning or visiting their dead human relations. When you put up a sign of 6 regulations like that in public (within a few yards of both the celebrated grave and the statue) then you're seeing more of the "dark side of Edinburgh" than any of the touts on the Royal Mile can show you.

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