Thursday, 12 May 2016

Inspired by a truly great American...

If I tell you I was thrilled when I learned I would be spending an afternoon at Prestonfield House in Edinburgh, then you'll probably be thinking I was just looking forward to taking part in the final of the Ambassadog contest (see previous post).

How wrong you would be.

The rest of the dogs last Sunday might have been happy to romp around on the lawn all afternoon and perform silly tricks for the cameras, but you'll know that such trivia would not satisfy your Bouncing Boffin for long.

So when no-one else was looking I snuck away from the official proceedings and entered the hotel, in search of a very special room.

I took a few wrong turns...

Then regained my bearings.

I exercised great self control and desisted from chewing the furniture... 

And eventually I reached my destination.

Isn't that exciting! The Benjamin Franklin Suite! Yes the great man really did stay right here during a visit to Scotland in 1759.

So I had a good sniff around and imagined conversing about theories of electricity with one of my scientific heroes. 

Gosh I felt so inspired. I could only feel pity for those poor ignorant pups who had stayed outside and missed such a wonderful opportunity to commune with the spirit of genius across the centuries.

And although I am not the official 'Ambassadog' (and to demonstrate that there are no sour grapes) I still want do my bit in telling the world about my wonderful homeland. I feel I can do no better today than to leave you with words from Mr B. Franklin himself, taken from a letter he wrote to one of his Scottish hosts:

"….the pleasure we had enjoyed, and the kindnesses we had received in Scotland, and how far that country had exceeded our expectations. On the whole, I must say, I think the time we spent there, was six weeks of the densest happiness I have met with in any part of my life; and the agreeable and instructive society we found there in such plenty, has left so pleasing an impression on my memory, that did not strong connexions draw me elsewhere, I believe Scotland would be the country I should choose to spend the remainder of my days in."

PS You might also like to know that when Benjamin Franklin stayed at Prestonfield House, his host was the eminent Edinburgh physician Sir Alexander Dick, whose many claims to fame include having introduced rhubarb to Scotland...


  1. Crikey Bertie ..... your a wealth of information, mate!! You really should be Ambassadog, aye?? Benjamin Franklin stayed at that magnificent building in 1759????????????? There were NO buildings in all of Australia then. Thanks for taking us on that tour. It was very interesting. What a magnificent place. AND what a lovely letter Mr Franklin wrote aye?? Those other pups didn't deserve to be even nominated for Ambassadog did they?? How could they stay outside?? That bloke introduced rhubarb to Scotland, aye?? Bet the Scots are glad he did. Rhubarb goes so well with porridge or so Mum says.

  2. well who knew - I guess you did and that I why you should of been ambassador !

  3. Benjamin Franklin is one of my heroes, too, but fur da reason dat he is one of our Founding Fathers and helped to lead da Revolution dat got us free and independent! My Momma's family is Scots-Irish on both sides and came ovfur here way back in da 17th century and fought in da Revolutionary War.... on da winning side!

    One of our favoritest Ben Franklin quotes is dis one..."They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."

    Yep, dat about sums it up...

  4. How exciting Bertie, what great tracking skills you showed and what a wonderful venue as well!
    I wonder how long it took Mr Franklin to travel from the US to Scotland?
    Loves and licky kisses
    Princess Leah xxx

  5. Of course you went exploring you are a Scientist and that is what you do seek knowledge. OMCs was that furniture made from deer antlers. WTG not caving in to temptation to snack. Thank you so much for that wonderful tour of Mr. Benjamin Franklin's room.
    Hugs madi your bfff
    PS as for dressing up for Whitley...Bertie you look smashingly handsome in your sweaters and I love the scarf you are wearing in your header is RED and I love RED.

  6. Yes indeed. Despite the fact that you are not the titular ambassadog for Scotland, you are continuing to do the best job of filling the post.

    We love the hotel. Can you get muzzer a discount?

    Gus n Teka

  7. Hari OM
    WTG Bertie lad, show 'em how it's done!!! Golly though, all my years in Edinburgh and I did not know BF had visited there!!! Wonderfurs... Hugs and wags, YAM-aunty xxx

  8. Bertie that was so interesting we love, love, love history...
    and this furnitures are made with natural chews, how cool is that? that antlers are in my dreams tonight :o)

  9. OMD OMD OMD YESssssssssssssss fur SURE you made a WISE decision to visit the suite where BEN FRANKLIN himself did stay... OMD that is soooooo Exciting. Esp. fur YOU... Blogville's OWN Scientific Advisor.
    OMD OMD BERTIE... did you know that Ben Franklin only took AIR BATHS???? Now that is a peep we could all appreciate... he left the WATER outta the Baff... GENIUS fur SURE.

    Pee S... we are glad that you did CHEWS not to Gnaw on the FURnishings... THAT took REAL RESTRAINT on your pawt.

    1. I had no idea about the 'air baths' Frankie but they sound a great idea, and for sure if they are good enough for the great Mr Franklin then they are good enough for yours truly?

  10. Oh wow! Mom could never trust us in Franklin suite or any other suite. She can just see Fry and Tuvok peeing the carpet or chewing the sheets!

  11. So happy to read about a great American in the midst of our current political scene here in the USA.

  12. You are royalty for sure!
    Lily & Edward

  13. What? Did they make a decision? How did we miss that? No one could do the job as well as you!!! Oh, thanks for the peak into the Franklin suite!

    Your Pals,

    Murphy & Stanley

  14. Thats ok. Youre still a winner in my book Bertie. That suite is made just for you!!


  15. As we said, those Ambassadog peeps made a huge mistake. 1759...sheesh, the First Fleet didn't even get here until 1788! Now about that antler chair, we think you should ask Santa for one of those...

  16. We have tingles, Bertie, and can't even imagine seeing a place where Mr. Franklin stayed!! What an honor and much more important than impressing some silly judges!
    Dory, Jakey, Arty & Bilbo

  17. How exciting! I'm glad that you got to see such an historic place.

  18. Bertie - Did you chase the peacocks ?

  19. Bertie, I just directed the family of a friend whose daughter has just arrived in Edinburgh for some study abroad. I hope she finds your blog, as you are unquestionably an incredible ambassadog and would no doubt enrrich her time in your wonderful country. (By the way, I'm making rhubarb pie this afternoon. I will think of you and Sir Alexander Dick and your country as I eat it!)

  20. Well really as always this is quite fascinating. First We can't belive they allowed you in especially with all those fabulous things to chew on And really we are still reeling about the rhubarb Who knew?

  21. Bertie, it seems like you had a great day walking in the footsteps of a hero and meeting a stunning ladydog. I think you probably should have won, but it probably would have restricted your thinking time too much!
    I did ask my facebook friends to vote for you though.

    ~lickies, Ludo.
    pee ess: Did you at least get to take one of those antlers from the chair?