September 19, 2013

week one.

I had hoped to do a "photo of the week" deal to briefly summarize each of our 14 weeks in Edinburgh... the problem is there are far too many photos to pick from every week. But self-discipline will prevail! I shall do three photos of the week.

I shall try, anyway.

This is Wayne and a map the day after we flew into the city. Wayne had just slept for 16 hours and was feeling brave and exploratory. We used this map a lot. But Edinburgh is a silly place full of tunnels and closes and steps and different levels and hills and as such, a map is basically useless. Well, not useless. Just... well, you're going to be confused anyway so shove the map in your backpack and figure it out on your own. 

These are what the streets look like in Old Town (which is where our flat was located). This particular photo is looking up the Royal Mile towards Edinburgh Castle. I'm also surprised when I look back at this photo because I had forgotten how few tourists were there in May! The numbers went up dramatically -- seriously, by hundreds of thousands -- once August hit. You literally had to queue up to cross the street. 

Do you like my UK lingo? I do.

Oh, the glory that is springtime! Like much of North America this year, west Michigan was cursed with a lousy spring. It was cold. It was wet and snowy. I wore mittens in May. Some miserable rodent ate all my tulips moments before they bloomed. 

I almost cried that day. 

Then we flew into Edinburgh, and I remember sitting on the bus on the way downtown from the airport, and I was this big smelly jet-lagged mess and was kinda sorta freaking out about what we had just done and then outside, a giant orange rhododendron bush flashed by. And then another one. And then we were passing these gardens and parks that were overflowing with spring flowers and these trees that were weighed down so heavily with blossoms that they were touching the ground and I realized something I hadn't realized before -- I was going to get two springs this year. And then I almost cried on that day, too. But that was because of happiness with a side of jet lag. Well, probably mostly jet lag. 

Anyway. This photo is taken in The Meadows, a great big green space in the middle of the city right next to the university. Check out those flowering trees! We spent a lot of time here -- it was a good place to play catch. We did get some weird looks, though. Scottish people play cricket and golf, not catch. Baseball is a strange phenomenon to them -- they think it's a "sissy" game. Baseball, cricket, golf -- you're whacking a ball with a stick in every single one of them, and each game requires the participant to wear goofy pants, so... yeah. More photos next week!

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