Our agenda this morning is upcoming travels, books and any other business. Maybe in that order, maybe not. We’ll see. It’s Saturday morning and I am going all the way to Parkhead later to watch the Hibs. I am currently off for ten days with a few travels planned for the coming time. I have a couple of trips sorted already. I am off to Manchester on Tuesday and Dundee on Thursday. I will be in Edinburgh next Sunday and at some point I will try and get to Dunbar. I think I’m due a fix of my home town. Beyond that I’ll be having a few lie ins and trying my very best to read some books, maybe getting round to a few Glasgow jaunts too, probably resulting in a right few posts for the blog in the process. Manchester should be interesting. At time of writing, I have done absolutely no research for Manchester but I’m sure I’ll manage to cobble together a decent day.
I haven’t read so much this week. I have a lot of books on my tablet plus I’ve still got Maria Sharapova’s autobiography and We Only Want The Earth, Sandy Macnair’s rundown of Hibs’ fortunes last season. Also sitting by my bed are For Every One, a book of poetry by Jason Reynolds, which I bought mainly because it’s published by 404 Ink, an independent publisher from Edinburgh behind Nasty Women and bringing Chris McQueer to the world’s attention. The world or this corner of it are immensely grateful for that. I also have The Silver Darlings by Neil Gunn still. Digitally, though, I have the latest Ian Rankin and Ann Cleeves, which I might work through on my various journeys this week.
I did read The Railway Adventures by Vicki Pipe and Geoff Marshall, the duo behind All The Stations, the YouTube series from last summer going around each and every railway station in the land. It was a nicely illustrated book but I liked the attention-to-detail, the asides and quips that made it feel personal rather than just another travel guide.
Talking of which, I’ve been thinking about last Sunday’s post, which was a walk along the Restalrig Railway Path. At the moment Sunday posts here are a bit freeform. Tomorrow’s, for example, is about the view from Park Circus here in Glasgow. Anabel’s comment on the Restalrig post got me thinking about the lesser-spotted parts of Edinburgh, the bits that aren’t on the tourist trail. Edinburgh, to many, is about the Old Town and Princes Street, maybe a diversion to the Botanic Gardens or the Royal yacht down in Leith. That stuff doesn’t interest me, or not very much. Off the top of my head, I have a few thoughts, either posts that I can write here from memory or would need a visit. For starters, though, I can recommend the beautiful Colinton Dell, on the Water of Leith walkway and which I hope to visit next weekend, or the equally lovely Hermitage of Braid, which I was in a few months ago. Both of which are well outside Edinburgh city centre though very reachable via public transport (Colinton Dell is near Slateford train station and served by many buses, particularly the 44, while the Hermitage gets the 5, 11, 15 and 16, if memory serves.)
Since I started writing this post the other night, I have added to the to-read pile. On Thursday I was killing time at Braehead on the way to work and ended up in Waterstone’s. Fatal mistake. I bought a new compilation of writings by Nan Shepherd, Wild Geese, which currently sits in my backpack. If it’s anything like the book of Muriel Spark’s essays I read a few years ago, it will be a big hit. My favourite book is The Living Mountain and the most popular post on this blog, thanks to Google, is It’s a grand thing to get leave to live, since those words appear on an RBS banknote. This new collection has been edited by Charlotte Peacock, whose fine biography of Nan Shepherd Into The Mountain came out last year. Charlotte Peacock also has a blog, which I can heartily recommend too. I think Wild Geese will be one of those books to savour and read slowly to get its best effect, like The Living Mountain and the best books, in my experience.
One last thing before I go. I also write a football blog called Easter Road West, which is generally about Hibs but can delve into other aspects as required. On Tuesday night I went to watch Scotland Under-21s play England Under-21s at Tynecastle. England won 2-0, incidentally. Anyway, I’ve written a couple of posts over at ERW about the game itself and the overall experience of watching a game at the home of my team’s deadly rivals. Please do go have a read. What might be of more interest to Walking Talking readers is this morning’s post which is about a visit I made a couple of months ago to St. Mary’s Church in the Calton, which is where Celtic were founded. Hibs are playing Celtic today hence I posted it today. I’m interested in the beginnings of things and it’s a different way to write about football or indeed any well-covered topic.
Anyway, that’s us for today. As ever, thanks for reading, liking, following, commenting. Tomorrow’s post here features Park Circus and Streets of Glasgow on Wednesday features Woodlands Road.
Have a very nice weekend.