Sunday, October 25, 2009

Scotland's creature comforts . . .

As we wind down the last week here in Edinburgh, I wanted to talk a little about some Scottish comforts -- those little surprises that challenge and delight. I'll start with the kitchen. I think the Scots are way ahead of us in conserving energy, for each outlet has its own on/off button. Beware the maker of tea who does not recognize the switch is turned off!

I did bake a pizza in the oven. Once. The symbols (no words, no numbers) look something like a fan, a shower and a death ray. Our poor little pizza had the combo fan and death ray. And good for the emergency eject button on the toaster, for after four weeks, I've still not been able to adjust the side panel for proper "brownness". I have mastered the art of catching toast and scones mid-air. Our kitchen looks out over a courtyard. Two trees full in autumn bloom have progressed from bright yellow to red and brown. As I cook, I can watch city pigeons draft on the wind.

We have sturdy doors for each room, holding the heat within and individual radiators, turned low, that automatically come on (or not) in each room. In the living room, we can watch the artificial glow of the wall fireplace (and heater if we master the remote). At night, we snuggle underneath a duvet, no double sheets as in the States. It's so easy to make the bed. Simply waft the comforter in the air and it falls into place. Bright colors, easy to change.

Have I saved the best for last? The bathroom. You may use two levels of flushes by pressing a dual button on the toilet. The greatest luxury has been the heated towel rack, looking rather like a shiny chrome waterfall. This heats the towel deliciously,and these racks are common throughout Scotland. 'Tis true. The water pressure does vary, but we have a bathtub for luxurious soaking of tired feet. And we are in a third floor apartment, up three big flights (no elevator), but the stairs circle around in a graceful arc. I almost can make it up the stairs now without huffing and puffing.

Today we walked down the hill, across the mound and through the edge of New Town, over to the Dean Gallery and the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art. The first room we entered had us spellbound, dedicated as it was to Dada and Surrealism. My favorites, Cecil Collins and Jawlensky. On the way home we were treated to this sunset, looking back at the Scott Monument. Click on the image to go to webshots for other pics of Edinburgh. And may all your days end with beautiful sunsets. . .

Scott Monument

1 comment:

Gordon Mason said...

Aye, that's Scotland fur ye! Slainte!