I’ve left Edinburgh now and begun my journey towards home and am only now getting around to the posts for what I got up to over the last few months!
For my first few days in Edinburgh I did a whole lot of not much. One day I did check out a bunch of op shops, sorry, charity shops for some more warm clothes. They mostly still had out their summer stock, didn’t they know all the international students were arriving and getting cold?
My first weekend coincided with the end of the festivals. On the Saturday, we went to a buskers’ day, and an experimental musical performance, and watched the fireworks on Sunday from the hill nearby. The Big Beach Busk was down on the promenade in Portobello. A handful of bagpipers were scattered between guitarists. A band whose members all looked angry about being there drowned out everyone else around them. We stopped at a bench for a cup of tea and snacks and admired the blue sky and water, and the yellow sand blowing along to the groynes. Back through town we sorted through the charity shops and eyed off the semi-detacheds. They looked like the stone McMansions of their day.
The musical performance was called Delusion of the Fury described as, “inspired by Japanese Noh theatre works and Ethiopian myth.” It was in the Kings Theatre which has been refurbished with a new whimsical view of the heavens painted on the domed ceiling of the theatre itself. The performance was enthralling. The early sections introduced the audience to the novel instruments. One looked like a collection of glass cake covers, another thrummed under the mallets of its performer. From our seats, among the last available, another instrument looked like a rack of fine clay soup bowls or plant pots. The fog started to rise and the musicians became the performers. Two or three stories were slowly developed. I had to close my eyes a few times because the visuals were changing so slowly I needed to block them out so I could focus on the music. The gaffer taped cardboard tube goats were the pinnacle of the show. It was probably one of the strangest cool things I’d ever seen.
We took cheese, biscuits and chocolate up Calton Hill alongside a few hundred other people to watch the fireworks at the other end of the valley off Castle Rock. People perched on the steps of the National Monument behind us. A light mist threatened and then cleared. The fireworks were fireworks. That was the end of the festivals and the start of a week off for everyone in the household. We were all keen for the roadtrip later in the week that was in the planning.