Tuesday, 25 September 2012

A year older and a new wave of inspiration

 Well, here I am.  A whole year older and feeling sick from too much birthday cake.  This year I decided I needed to get away from everything so I booked a long weekend in my most favouritist city in the whole, wide world.  Edinburgh.
I’ve done a post about how inspiring Edinburgh is already, so I won’t milk it.  What I will say, however, is that not an hour went past this weekend without inspiration knocking me on the head.

We arrived on the early evening of my birthday to a wet and gloomy Edinburgh.  It was beautiful.  The tourists were hiding, the residents were in work and me and the hubby grabbed our umbrellas and went for a walk down the Royal Mile.  We got drenched but along the way I saw wrought iron words, Medieval traces, dark green parks and a castle upon a hill, sheathed in mist.

For the rest of the weekend we were bathed in glorious, Scottish sunshine.  We visited the zoo and went to spy on the pandas.  Pandas are very strange animals, but incredible to watch.  If you’re visitng Edinburgh, I highly recommend taking a day to spend at the zoo.  Situated on a steep hill with views all the way up.
The top is particularly precious to me as this is where the hubby proposed to me, two years ago on a dark and damp day.  It was wonderful to go back in the sunshine and relive the moment beneath a blue sky.

This holiday was one of views.  I took countless photos of the castle and we discovered Arthurs Seat (although didn’t climb it this time) and Calton Hill (much less a climb with panoramic views).  It was also a holiday of culture.  Yes, we went to the zoo but we also visited the Scottish National Galleries and the National Museum of Scotland, and that’s not including all of the wonderful street performers that can be found between the park and Royal Mile.

The museum was full of Scottish history and thought provoking art, all of which serves for great inspiration.  An artist’s expression of time passing and the ills of the world and the haunting exhibition of an ancient Scottish forest filled with wolves and bears.

We arrived back in rainy Bristol on Sunday evening to a very big birthday cake, with blisters, bruises, sore legs and, personally, a limp.  I spent Monday lying on the sofa, far too tired to do anything but with my mind racing.
Unfortunately it was back to work today and I didn’t have a chance to think about either of my novels or short stories until I returned home.

We still haven’t done everything in Edinburgh.  I’m suffering from the holiday blues, thinking about walking through winding alleyways and wyds, listening for the voices of the dead and happening upon a band or dancers, dreaming of the highlands that exist beyond.  I hope to hold onto these feelings, at least until I’m able to convince my other half that we need to return to this beautiful city.

I highly recommend that you go, if you haven’t already.  There is so much to do and so much to see, even if you simply fancy a little walk before sitting before an incredible view.

Oh well, back to grindstone.

Ps. I wanted to share videos of the street performers with you but I'm having trouble uploading them.  However all of these photos were taken by us!  Yes, Edinburgh is that amazing!


  1. Jen, This post is laced with examples of how great your writing is... the beautifully childish excitement in "my favouritist city in the whole, wide world", through the scene setting with "gloomy Edinburgh" to the encompassing "wrought iron words, Medieval traces, dark green parks and a castle upon a hill, sheathed in mist".

    Buy me a bloody ticket now, I'm sold.

  2. Thank you Josie! Maybe I could get a job with the Scottish tourist board!!

    Everyone should go to Edinburgh. I tried to convince the mister to move there but he always says no.