I left the lovely place I called home for a year just as the season they call summer started to change into the chillier winds of the upcoming autumn. For the longest time, I’ve hesitated to put feelings into words into this entry just days after I had handed in the biggest work of my life (s0 far!) partly out of sheer laziness, but because of the overwhelming sadness and the newly minted loss that’s churning deep in the tummy at the moment as I type this in yet another place which I should know like the back of my hand but is still to me so foreign.
The happier memories keep coming back still – the recent and most vivid yet was the day TC and I decided to take a leisurely drive across along the Fife eastern coastal trail some time last week or so.
It was a neat, compact trip just as we planned it that took us onto the Forth bridge and onto the East Neuk. Poor TC had to endure my whims for stopping time to time just so I could use his camera for a shot that seemed somewhat picturesque. We breezed through the quaint and pretty fishing villages under angry looking skies and blustery winds (those make fantastic pictures under the rare and occasional burst of sunlight) and finally made a photo-stop in Pittenweem, which somehow landed us in a chocolate cafe with a cup of unbelievable hot chocolate and a huge box of pralines to go.
Well, then – who knew Cocoa tree Chocolate also had self-catering holiday flats?
Anstruther was literally a stone’s throw away in the rented but rather trusty Astra, where apparently the most famous Fish and Chips store in the UK could be found. It got TC’s finicky and reluctantly-given approval after a couple of bites, so it must be worth something, never mind the press reviews.
St. Andrews was our last stop and a little walk down its main streets was sufficient. The Scottish equivalent of Cambridge as I would call it, minus the snobbery of the upper class. Or maybe that was just not evident in the summer absence of the above-mentioned.
And then it was my turn behind the wheel of the car: riddled by mini squabbles, a rushed 20 minutes in Dunfermline, unmarked country roads, and the most infuriating traffic I had ever encountered in the space of 45 minutes in the Edinburgh city centre.
My last week was spent in a frenzy of non-stop packing, rushing to Edinburgh Fringe Festival activities between the free slots of time, returning library books and just simply….trying to live. The crowds on the High street and the Royal Mile were obviously insane, but there were always the beloved crag trails if TC and I needed to escape the summer crowd. Climbed them again, we did, if only just to look at the sprawl of the city for the last time.
And then it was all over. We piled as much as we could into a rented red Nissan March and headed for Glasgow Airport, navigating through the treacherous road signs that confused us tremendously. But somehow we made it, with several directional scares along the way along city bypasses.
I remember little after that. The flight was god-awful, with loads of screaming children, crowded terminals and endless duty-free shops. Then came the reality check: the unfamiliar familiarity and the rush of fatigue and the tangled emotions that accompany every trip.