I remember this day last year very well. I came to Edinburgh for a few days before going back to Berlin to stress out about the grad show. It was during this trip that I walked around Edinburgh a bit more and got more confident with the idea of possibly being able to live here. I had no idea how or when, but suddenly I got mentally ready to leave Berlin and move to Scotland.
Now it seems like the one and only logical solution for our distance relationship, but back then I was so unsure and had no idea where to start, what to do, how to cope with that stupid University and all that.
But the more I was thinking about moving to Scotland, the more logical it was appearing. Here’s a story for you.
When I was born, my parents were walking around me for about 10 days with no idea how to name the crying thing. Until my father switched on TV and saw the news about Elizabeth II: she was celebrating 35 years on the throne.
-Tania! – he shouted to my mother. Liza! It’s Liza!
See, it all started when I was a bit over a week old. I got my name from the British queen (thanks, Lizzy, I love it).
Then during the school years, I got very much obsessed with Britain and Scotland in particular. This country seemed so mysterious and beautiful. I still remember a sentence from the topic we had to learn by heart at school: ‘gently sloping hills of Scotland‘:)
I watched the Highlander movie, then another one, then I got completely obsessed with the series. Even though it wasn’t set up in Scotland anymore, to me all of them were Scottish. I couldn’t quite understand the kilts and the bagpipes as a thing, but I thought Scots were very special. Dunkan McLoud, there will be the only one, all that.
When I got a bit older and the adolescence hit me with all the punk-rock, I was dreaming about tartan trousers or a skirt: the Royal Stewart (as I know now) pattern was the dream one. I remember looking for it in every fabric shop and not being able to find it. It was long before the eBay. Unfortunately, a 17 year old Liza never got that tartan skirt.
Then Scotland somehow got forgotten. A few friends were talking about getting kilts once in a while, but that was it. Then there were years of University, then travelling in Europe and Asia, then another Uni in Berlin. The idea of getting a British visa never really hit me because I thought it’d be too complicated and expensive (it was). And a few years ago I decided to finally get it. Suddenly I was getting a dozen recommendations for movies and series based in Scotland, I was stunned by the footage of landscapes and horrified by the accent!
The last drop pushing me to go to Edinburgh was, of course, Trainspotting. I watched it for the first time many years ago and didn’t quite get it. Last year I watched it again when I was in Thailand and something clicked in my head: I had to go to Edinburgh! The soundtrack, the language, the mood, the city, nature – I don’t know what was it, but in a few weeks I watched it again and then got to see the T2 in a very cool cinema in Berlin. And I was hooked. I wish I could give a hug to Mr Welsh for writing this book and Mr Boyle for making that movie.
I will never get tired of telling this story: standing in the middle (I think) of the Northern Bridge in Edinburgh, seeing the sea, the mountain (Arthur’s seat), the old town, the castle (all from one spot) and thinking loudly to myself I COULD LIVE HERE. After so many years of travelling, it became hard to surprise, to impress me. I can appreciate the beauty, but it’s hard to get wowed by a place. Well, Edinburgh definitely did it!
And in two-three hours later, I met you my dear Andrew <3 And the life-long Scottish obsession took its very logical turn. I do live in this city:)
Happy birthday, my love! How great that we walked in the very same bar at the very same time:)
The moral? There are no right or wrong reasons to travel. Sometimes the weirdest ones have the most unexpected results!