Edinburgh

The Shore Leith

So we are back from Edinburgh – the final stop on the whirlwind world tour that we’ve been making before the big move. It was an easy, sweet and comfortable week, which we spent surrounded by many of the people who know us best. It was an oddly calm and unemotional reunion with the city I once loved so much I dedicated to an entire A-Z to it on this blog.

DorkyDad stayed in the centre of town, and spent most of the week focused on his festival shenanigans. I did steal him away for dinner at our favourite fish restaurant in Leith one evening – the first Dorky date night in a year – and I also made it along to watch the final of the BBC Poetry Slam that he was hosting.

That night was a lovely opportunity to see friends both old and new. I’ve known @housetoastonish and @betaraycarrie for almost ten years – there is not a better-suited or more adorable couple in Scotland, and we will long treasure the copy of Dr Seuss’s Oh The Places You’ll Go that they gave us to say goodbye. I heart them hard.

Lovely C was a high school friend, who was beautiful and poised, and ran 10 metres ahead of me in every cross-country race for six years, and was then a stellar university flatmate, and is now just a good, brave person who I admire and love with all of my heart.

Donna is someone I had never met before, but I think her blog is bloody brilliant, and I envy her passionate, honest writing skills. We have given each other many virtual cuddles, and I was very touched that she made it possible to give her a real-life, arm-in-arm, cheek-to-cheek cuddle too.

We had a few wee day-trips.

I scooted down to Berwick on the train, walked the walls, bought a souvenir camper-van, and had an honest-to-god real conversation with my best university friend. K and I used to dance in the student union at night, knocking back fifty pence vodkas and pogo-ing to the Proclaimers. She has seen IT ALL. And I have seen IT ALL. And now we are both very sensible and mature, and we only drink vodka when our children have gone to bed.

For the most part, though, DorkySon and I wanted to tuck in and spend plenty of chillout time with my Mum. It will likely be the last time that we see her lovely Portobello flat, as it’s currently on the market (if you know anyone looking for a sweet wee hideaway right on the beach, do send them her way!) and DorkySon did his usual thorough job of covering it in toy cars, books and crayons within the first five minutes of us being there.

I’ve never lived in that flat, but Mum has a real homemaker’s touch, and it is full of beautiful, soulful things that make it cosy and welcoming. DorkySon and I share a bunk bed when we’re there, and we sleep under the same woollen, patchwork blankets that I had on my bed as a child. We all eat around the wooden dining table that used to belong to my Grandpa, and at my request those meals are all childhood favourites; baked potatoes, beans on toast, egg and chips. It is the place where, more than anywhere else, I can relax.

DorkyDad and I have learnt a lot of things over the years, but the most important of those lessons was the one that taught us who our real friends are. They are art teachers and fishmongers. They are butchers and cleaners, buskers and bums.  They are tailors, they are taxi drivers, and they are shopowners, sales assistants, singers and poets. They are Muslims, midwives and MSPs, they are doctors, and drivers, and the dude who brought our dry cleaning. They are Green and they are Greek and they are so totally gay. They are nine years old and ninety, they are starting school and retired. They are every one of them true of heart.

We left Edinburgh knowing who our friends are.  We left Edinburgh feeling loved. We left Edinburgh so very, very grateful. Filled up with the good stuff.

But we left feeling entirely confident that we are making the right decision. It is not our home anymore. It’s time to find a new one.

This time next week, we will be on our way.

14 responses

  1. You are making the right decision, even though we’ll miss you incredibly. Crazy, I know, that we’ve only met once yet I feel sad that we won’t be on the same side of the world any more. But what an adventure! And I so look forward to reading all about the new experiences and new friends you will have xxx

  2. I can’t believe I’m going to miss you by a matter of days! We fly back to UK on Monday. I was really looking forward to meeting you at the MADs😦
    I am so excited for you as you start this new chapter though. Good Luck xx

  3. I have been reading your blog for a while now and I have to say you write beautifully. This post has brought tears to my eyes. You and you family are very brave to go to the other side of the world for a new life and I do hope everything goes great for you there and the beauty of blogs are you will be able to tell us. We are putting our house up for sale in January and moving about 40 mins away and I’m scared,then I read your first post about moving away and laughed at myself. I’m worried about moving to a town where there will be no familiar faces,no one who knows me but,like you I know it will be a good move for us. I’m a lot older than you,my children have flown the nest,but this is the house they grew up in and has so many memories but you can take memories with you,can’t you?

  4. Some time ago I stumbled upon your Edinburgh A-Z post and ever since I have been reading and enjoying your beautiful and moving words. Edinburgh was my first home away from home (I am from Barcelona), and leaving a city that had meant so much to me was hard, but at the same time I was so excited- there were still so many places I wanted to call home. All the best in your new adventure.

  5. Fab post, and such a small world, we know @housetoastonish and @betaraycarrie too, their entry in our wedding guest book is one of my favourites, lovely people.

  6. What an incredibly heartfelt and lovely post. I am so sorry we never made it to visit you in Edinburgh or in London. But we are hoping that Tasmania is on our short list of visits in the next few years. Many hugs to you all as you prep for this big adventure! ~ David

  7. What a lovely swan song to Edinburgh….. such lovely words. So glad you had such a lovely last time there. And to think that you are now half way across the world. Ps. Your mum’s flat is lovely – love her furniture – how tasteful! X.

  8. Pingback: Tots100 Parent Blogger Fresh Five | Tots 100

  9. Pingback: Cheerio 2013! « dorkymum

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