It’s been a few years since I wrote a reflective post at New Year, but I think 2019 deserves a little reminiscence before I dive into the new decade! There have been lots of stand out moments for me this year including a new job and settling into my new flat, but it was the smaller things that I loved the most in 2019.
It was back in January that Naveed took me to meet his friends in Manchester, my first time in the city. I loved seeing the places where he used to watch live music and experienced a little of the nightlife Manchester has to offer. The live music and pizza at Matt and Phred’s was the highlight of the trip!
I’m not a massive pancake fan or anything but Pancake Day this year was such a random and fabulous experience. At the time I was working in the city centre, near Grassmarket, where there are so many great food places. A bakery nearby was doing a special ‘pancake empire biscuit’ which was a fusion like no other (and empire biscuits happen to be my favourite biscuit!), and so my day got off to a great start. Then, at lunchtime, I wandered towards the Meadows to try a crepe from Tupiniquim and found they were letting people make their own crepes on their cart! I was literally making pancakes in the rain on my lunch break.
To celebrate my new job my Dad gifted me a Dual turntable that he’d reworked from the 90s. I’d been saying for a while how I’d wanted to move away from endless playlists and streaming and get back to enjoying albums. Having a record player has made music exciting again. Plus, I decided to host a record party and asked people to bring along an album – I was gifted most of the albums because none of my friends have record players, win!
I love gothic fiction and went along to a very atmospheric book, wine and cheese night in a Stockbridge cellar back in April. I was discussing Shirley Jackson’s ‘Haunting of Hill House’ with strangers, enjoying cheese and finding myself very excited to get back into a healthier reading habit again.
Summers are made for camping, even when Scotland’s midge game is strong and there’s a very high chance of rain! I went camping lots this year with friends and am so grateful for my wee car which has made exploring Scotland even more fun. Camping trips also made my rocky road pretty famous in 2019…
It had been over a decade since I’d ridden a real bike outside and one day I hopped on a Just Eat rental bike in Leith and haven’t looked back since. I use them as much as possible instead of buses and love the cycle networks on Edinburgh’s old railway lines.
Portugal has become a favourite place of mine to visit recently. I loved the charm of Porto and had the best time with Josh, even though I did get shingles halfway through the trip… Next time it’ll be Lisbon!
I went to Leith Theatre to see Sharon Van Etten with my brother and it was one of the best gigs I’ve ever seen. The moment she broke out into Sunshine on Leith was immense.
Take a huge group of friends and a former hotel standing alone on the edge of a loch, add zero phone signal, good food and a couple of instruments and you’ve got the perfect long weekend away.
It was late October, approaching dusk, and a group of my oldest friends with three dogs walked through the sandy grass to an empty Luskentyre Beach. The sun was setting on the horizon, illuminating the wet sand causing the ground to blend into the sky, and it felt as though we were walking across a shimmering plain. There were dark clouds behind us and a quarter of a rainbow hovering above a mountain, deep blue waves washing into the shore below. I have never been to a place that made me feel so calm and awestruck as Luskentyre Beach. It was my favourite moment of 2019.