Sunday, 30 June 2013

Getting mediaeval

Day 2/51 of the holidays saw us travelling to Linlithgow in the rain.  Sigh.  

This summer we've joined Historic Scotland, so we can go on day trips to castles and the like.  

St Michael's Church and Linlithgow Palace
There are lots of cool things you can do, but we're starting off with jousting at Linlithgow palace.

I used to live near Linlithgow, and would regularly come to enjoy the peel and the lake, and occasionally venture into the palace too. It's not a good place for buggies, but it has some lovely details, a bit of romance, and some fine views. I especially love the covered seating area at the top of the Queen's tower (which unfortunately has some scaffolding up at the moment, and you can't read the sign telling you about it).  There she sat and waited in vain, for the King's return from battle.  Theirs was a love story, which is what you want in royalty, because they're generally not allowed it.

Bring on the knights!
The joust
But today battle was what it was all about. And what a battle it was!  There was fantastic, head-rolling, lance splintering, baddie booing jousting and fighting, and there were also people who knew what they were talking about showing us how to write with quills, dress in proper mediaeval dress (which must have been seriously stinky), make cords to hold our socks up (they didn't knit!  Their socks were woven and cut on the bias!), make medicines, and prepare feasts and banquets (apparently a feast is savoury, and banquets are sweet.  You had to be in the IN crowd to get an invite to a banquet).

The big girl and the Queen
(she could have done with a scarf)
Telling us all about feasts and banquets
(we weren't allowed to eat anything, sadly)
The kids had a great time, finding out about history, rolling down hills, sword-fighting, being princesses, and riding their trusty hobby-horses into battle.  I had a great time finding out stuff about the clothes (for a book I'm working on), finding out how to make a quill, and how to write with one, and just enjoying the great atmosphere.

There was so much going on.  It was really busy but the atmosphere was really good natured, despite constant rain, and there was always something to see.  I've taken loads of photos, and tried to narrow it down a bit to give you an idea.

on guard!
This is all happening again next weekend, and it doesn't take long to get to Linlithgow from anywhere in the central belt, so get over there (you can get tickets here). There's an efficient park and ride and everything. It's a great day out.

Mermaid - Linlithgow style

What have you been doing today?  And what would you recommend as a great day out?

People were enjoying the show from all over the palace