At the start of April (yes, this post is long overdue) Thomas and I visited Edinburgh for the weekend. We got the sleeper train up and were disgorged into a grey and rainy Edinburgh dawn. Luckily, our ace Airbnb hosts let us check into our Old Town apartment straight away. After a cheeky nap and some breakfast, we felt prepared to begin our exploration of the medieval side of the city, upon which my first reaction was.... "Why did no one tell me how beautiful Edinburgh is?!"
Ok, so it's famously beautiful, and Thomas has been trying to get me to visit ever since we met, but still... I was blindsided by just how lovely it was. The Old Town particularly is completely unlike any other place I've visited in the UK, instead feeling a lot more continental: Prague particularly sprung to mind, but there's also a hint of Amsterdam in the tall, narrow, gabled buildings.
As is our wont, we spent an enormous amount of time diving into bookshops, and I have to hand it to Edinburgh, it does bookshops extremely well. From the narrow, dusty shelves packed with secondhand treasure at Armchair Books in the Old Town, to the chic Golden Hare Books, an absolute gem of a place in Stockbridge, we browsed them all. My favourite, though, was Word Power, hands down the best radical bookshop I've ever been in. I came out with teetering stacks of books - from non-fiction about fat activism to YA novels with trans and intersex protagonists, Word Power had it all.
In between buying books we sampled amazing vegan cuisine at Henderson's in the New Town, ate vegan sorbet from Mary's Milk Bar, climbed endless steps, walked through parks and up Calton Hill, and I had a cracking evening in the pub with the lovely Gwen (meeting internet people is just the best). Unfortunately, Thomas was recovering from a particularly unpleasant bout of flu so we had to take things easier than we'd perhaps otherwise have done. This meant no trip to Leith, no Arthur's Seat... oh well, we'll just have to go back soon. Post-Brexit, Thomas is plotting a move back to Scotland, so perhaps our next visit will be a more permanent one.