I came across my Moleskine journal from last summer, and this took me back to that day—my first day back in Edinburgh, Scotland. I’d slept part of the night and awoken on New York time. So I went for a walk very early in the morning, and I wrote:
Friday, August 11. 2015
At eight in the morning, the Princes Street Gardens smell sweet—a vague scent of flowers and grasses I can’t name. The rubbish collectors are out picking up trash left on the grass and walkways. I’ve never been here before at this time to see it. I tip the solid wooden bench aright and sit down as a workman calls up to his friend at street level. The accent, as always, charms me as he answers the other with that Scottish upturned inflection, “Fuck yourself off!”
Only one other person (non-worker) is here—an artistic sort in Doc Martens, holding a notebook and writing. (Another writer.) The Waverley speakers announce arrivals and departures in an unintelligible blur as a train pulls away, and I wish I were on it. I should come here again in the morning, while the city is only beginning to waken.