Tuesday, August 21, 2007

We arrived safely, after several near-incidents, but no actual delays or misfortunes, even the guitar and both our bags made it with us. We only arrived yesterday, but we've had so much fun with my cousins, including a lovely posh dinner today at a hotel near Arthur's Seat, and hanging out at home sharing Laphroig and Aussie wine (and Spanish beer, and chorizo, peanut brittle, See's Candy, chocolate cake, guacamole, fresh salsa, home-made pizza, Dutch cheese, oatcakes, croissant, and even some wild strawberries from the garden.

The garden is still wonderfully overgrown, a bit short on daisies since my Dad just moved the lawn, but I managed to squeeze a daisy-chain crown out of it nonetheless. The house is still filled with randomly placed display cabinets full of cow creamers, ranging from lovely classic Staffordshire to horrendous cartoon numbers with painted on eyelashes and pouty red lips. This is the first time that I have found myself thinking that home is smaller than I remember it, not that the house is small, but that the scale of the hallway and staircase, the width of the lawn in the garden feel like a real sized house, not the giant things of my memory based in childhood

So now I'm sitting in the living room, using my sister's laptop on the wireless connection that Matt set up with three boy-cousins (they celebrated with beers all around, the Aussie boy-cousin has his own beer-cozie that he travels with). The guitar is being passed around, we just watched the student films of one cousin, and Matt's sharing the recordings of his music with everyone. Tomorrow we'll go into town and soak up some Festival atmo, and hopefully not too much rain.

Life is good.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Brace Yourself

All packed and ready to go, the airport shuttle cab picks us up at 8.30am tomorrow, a very civilized time to be departing on such a long trip. We JUST fit all our stuff into two large duffel bags, which seem to be under the weight limit, at least according to the relatively scientific method of weighing myself, then weighing myself holding the bag. For the larger of the two bags this involved Matt handing me the bag, held vertically as though I'm hugging a fat legless teddy bear, then he had to guide my feet onto the scale, since the bag obscured my view of the floor.

I am very glad that I resisted the lure of the super-efficient silver collapsible suitcase that tempted me last month, it was greatly discounted, but still expensive, and since then we've had to service the car, and not only tow Matt's bike, but replace the blown back tire. Perfect timing for these things to happen before a trip to Europe.

The cats are a little bemused by all the packing action, I will miss them a lot while we are gone, but I know our neighbors will take good care of them, G was talking about coming down to our apartment to study, so he will have a quiet space to read, and be company for the beasties at the same time. We are very fortunate to have such good friends living in the same building as us, and another eager potential cat-sitter who lives further away and was a little disappointed that he didn't get cat-guarding duty this time. His consolation prize is getting to pick us up at the airport when we get back.

By now everyone from my Dad's extended family has arrived at the house in Edinburgh, we're the last ones to roll up. Seventeen people total. Matt, Me, my parents and sister, four Aussies, three Catalan (near Barcelona), four French and one Englishwoman 30+ year transplant to Mauritius. Matt has met the Mauritian and French contingent, but not the rest. Poor lad. I think it's going to be utterly chaotic and great fun. Especially if the wine keeps flowing. Aunt Julia and I have a deal to keep each other's glasses full.

Monday, August 13, 2007


Where did my flickr thingy go? It suddenly vanished from my side bar. Maybe this is punishment for not adding interesting new photographs for a loooong time.

I'll have to add it back again, I have some lovely photographs from my cousin's wedding yesterday.

*ETA: OK, new flickr flash badge added, and new template picked

Saturday, August 04, 2007

Matt's back tire blew out on his way home from work last night, the back tire of his motorcycle that is. He's unharmed, and the bike's fine, which is pretty amazing since he was going highway speed when it happened. He called at 1am to tell me this (he works 4pm-midnight), and he got home a little after 3. I guess there aren't that many tow trucks on the clock in the middle of the night.

I'm about to go wake him up enough to stagger out to the car so we can drive up to LA to my Granny's house. My Dad is visiting, he just climbed Mt Whitney, and next weekend my cousin's getting married. There's going to be a lot of driving to LA County before we get on the plane to Edinburgh. Three weeks in Scotland! HOORAY. Giant family reunion, then five days in Stornoway, then a week of mostly having my parents to ourselves. Plus we have tickets to be in Princes St Gardens for the annual fireworks display.