A City Of Shifting Light

It is pouring in London this evening, a hard cold wind smashes the raindrops against the roof. If I believed in signs, I’d say it were a sign I should up sticks and move to Edinburgh – drizzly, saturate, inclement Edinburgh, a city shaped by chill winds from the East. “A city of shifting light, of changing skies, of sudden vistas. A city so beautiful it breaks the heart again and again.” (*Alexander McCall Smith)

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If I believed in portents, I’d say it means I should – specifically – live in this cosy, light-filled, vertiginous terrace just off Leith Walk ad infinitum. We rested our heads here this past weekend and I can’t stop, won’t stop, dreaming of a little life in this top-floor fortress. I’d write novels from the backroom study, creep across the sloping wooden floorboards each morning, shifting from socked foot to toe in the cold, anticipating the whistle of the antique tea kettle on the stove.

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On rainy nights like this one – an August night unusual in its bluster for London, perhaps, but run of the mill for our oft-deluged Scottish capital – I’d hunker down under piles of wool, tucked up with my favourite writers and a cup of hot cocoa. I’d fall asleep to the lights of the city twinkling below, the winds whipping off the Firth rattling the windowpanes.

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So if I believed in signs, I’d be booking my one-way ticket to the Burgh already. And even though I don’t believe in signs, I’m maybe, certainly, definitely contemplating doing so regardless…