1. The national flower is a thistle. It’s a weed, people. But like the Scots, it’s pretty and soft yet prickly and unique all at once.
2. The slang. “No danger” is a perfectly acceptable replacement for “no way”. Babies are bairns and weans, everything has “proper” or “pure” before it, and I am a lass, a hen, a quine (my current favourite).
3. Daffodils grow wild in spring, snow drops appear before the frost is gone, the blossoms are bright pink and fluffy.
4. Edinburgh is full of little nooks and crannies and side-streets of wonders, and I haven’t really discovered so much of it yet.
5. Every man over 60 with a cheeky smile and crinkly eyes reminds me of my grandfather.
6. It’s perfectly acceptable to wear a kilt to any special (or not so special, there are “casual kilts”) occasion.
7. When you’re sick you drink whisky with green ginger wine and float around on the fumes.
8. The acoustic music scene is supportive and active and somewhat glorious, and I have played many a venue, with more to come.
9. No one misunderstands or asks me to repeat my surname.
10. Any day over 20 degrees is celebrated and lauded as a “heatwave”, and we all eat icecream and throw our summer shorts on.
11. Because of the massive amount of importing, avocados are available and ripe all year around.
12. Primark, H&M, ASOS and Amazon UK.
13. Edinburgh’s Liberal Jewish Community has a lovely mix of personalities and nationalities and have welcomed me with an amazing warmth of spirit.
14. We love our Unlimited movie cards, which we abuse to the highest degree, and see a bunch of films that aren’t really worthy of our attendance. And Cineworld has Ben & Jerry’s.
15. I finally understand 99% of accents (they vary!) so am much happier answering the phone.
16. It looks a lot like home. Scotland is incredibly green, with beautiful mountain ranges, rivers and has large variety in its weather. Edinburgh being hilly is also somewhat comforting, coming from a hilly part of the world!
17. And yes that weather. I do kinda love it when the haar settles in and you can barely see the end of the street, or the canal freezes over, or the wind stops just for one sunny day, and you think “Gosh, this is alright.”
18. Despite not knowing anyone who actually speaks it (apart from primary teacher friends who know colours and songs), I think Gaelic is a fascinating language that sounds like you have the video on backwards. I imagine I’ll learn a few bits here and there. There is also a channel of all-Gaelic programming, BBC Alba, which occasionally plays SPL football games, so we watch it and I get confused thinking “I should be understanding this, because the video makes sense, but..”
19. It used to bother me that no one had a house here (well apart from D’s mother) and all lived in tenement buildings with rowdy neighbours, but now we’re on the ground floor with our own outdoor space in a quiet building, it’s kinda nice. I still call it “the house” (or “Featherhall”!) but that’s because I’ve never been fond of the term “flat”, and it really is a nice space. Just big enough for us to try and keep clean 80% of the time.
20. My Scotsman. He is surely the best thing to come out of Edinburgh since 1983.
PS. Weekly photo post to come when I can edit it. Photo placements are tricky from a phone app!