Saturday, May 06, 2006

North Berwick

The Boy insisted on getting out of town, much to my annoyance. I woke up, keen to tidy the flat. But we went, and I'm glad I did.

We headed out to North Berwick, about 20 miles east of Edinburgh. (If you read and listened to blog entry Say and Play you'll know how to pronounce North Berwick.) As we rode along on the train, we went through Musselburgh, Prestonpas, Wallyford, Longniddry. We both wished aloud that we could live there as we past wee cottages and detached houses. I like the convenience of living in the city and we practically live in the city centre. And as much as I like our flat, it doesn't seem right. I want a home, a place with a garden where I could grow some vegetables and hang out my washing and attach solar panels to the roof. As pokey little place that's terribly awkward. But there's so many ramifications to making the choice of living outside the city -- how to get to Boy's work, needing a car -- and we just don't want to face them now.

We first climbed North Berwick Law, which had settlements on it as far back as the Roman times and the Iron Age. There was loads of stinging nettles around -- it's the right time of year. Stinging nettles do exactly what they say on the tin: touch them and you're stinging and itching.

I have this recipe for stinging nettle soup that I've been dying to try. It calls for young nettles, but I figured that the ones on the hill would be good enough. I just couldn't convince Boy to pick them for me! There was also lots of what we thought was, after rubbing it between our fingers, mint.

Could Iron Age people have planted that mint on the hillside of North Berwick Law? Wild.

Going away from the law, we chanced upon these in a farmer's field: an enclosure enclosing nothing and a tree in jail. Someone take the nail gun and boards away from that man!

As North Berwick is a seaside town, we wanted to walk along the beach to get back to the station. Boy and I would kill to live by the sea. Hmmm, maybe we could sell up? we thought, as we past the estate agents. No chance. All the property was really dear and we'd only be able to get a flat in North Berwick. No point. But the thought of our little swimmy dogs being able to have a paddle every day, that would be great.

Here's a little slideshow of our day. I would have posted these on Shutterfly, my usual step, but these pictures a bit shitty. I think the low light (a pretty dull day) didn't help things.

Our trip to North Berwick isn't the only indicator that we are living in the wrong place. Although yesterday's temperatures were a toasty 18°C (64°F) in Edinburgh, it was 24° (75°) in Keswick, close to wear BIL2, SIL, Zebedee, Dougal and Dylan live; Leeds, where Grandma lives, was 23° (73°); and London was 28° (82°)! I'm an American southerner, get me out of here!


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