Instagrammers Anonymous: Hello 2013

So, uhm, it’s 2013. Anyone know what happened to 2012? It seemed to pass quite quickly…

2013 may be set to be a slightly quieter year than 2012 – although that said I’ve a couple of exciting things lined up, including a little trip to the States in September for a good friend’s wedding – but I think we can all agree that’s probably because 2012 was something of a vintage year.

Here to see out the old, and usher in the new is the New Year edition of Instagrammers Anonymous:

Edinburgh is quite big in the New Year (or Hogmanay) stakes, and this year was to be extra special because it was the 20th anniversary of the first major street party. I’m not entirely sure what happened in 92/3 to warrant such a party, but 20 years on it’s still going strong. One of the big highlights each year is the torchlight procession that weaves its fiery way through  the streets of the Old Town ending in a light show and firework display on Calton Hill. I’d realised that I’d never actually been before, so this year I made a last-minute decision to go along and see what all the fuss was about.20130103-114830.jpg

Being the hard-working individual that I am I was in the office in between Christmas and New Year [insert noises of pity here]. One of the upsides to this – aside from the cake – was that I got to see the spectacular sunset on the 31st from one of the highest points in the New Town. This was what we saw looking out over Charlotte Square.20130103-114823.jpg

And finally, New Year just wouldn’t be the same without a healthy does of fireworks. We quite like firing rockets and the like off historic monuments in this town, and New Year is no different. After Sunday night’s show on Calton Hill it was the turn of the Castle to bring in 2013 with a big bang.20130103-114838.jpg

All the best for the coming year, and here’s hoping it’s everything you wish it to be and more.


Instagrammers Anonymous: Princes Street Gardens and Charlotte Square

Normally Instagrammers Anonymous is a summary of the week that has just been as seen through my addiction to Instagram; however, it would have been VERY dull this week. Aside from a trip to the rugby at Murrayfield last weekend (obviously that doesn’t come under the dull category) I’ve done very little except work and look at flats.

My moving plans appear to be being thwarted once again – think mouldy bathrooms which are going to get “sorted, they’re painting it this week” (I kid you not), rooms the size of shoeboxes and rents larger than Greece’s national debt – but to counter act this dullness I thought we’d have a couple of photos I’ve taken during lunchtime wanders this week.

The first is of the Royal Scots Greys monument – better known to most of us as the guy on a horse at the top of Princes Street Gardens. It’s appeared several times on the blog before, in a post about Princes Street Gardens, to name but one, but most of us know very little about it. One of the UK’s longest serving regiments – in fact Scotland and the UK’s, as it pre-dates the Acts of Union – the Royal Scots Greys were part of its respective national armies for 293 years from 1678 to 1971. The statue itself dates back to 1906 and was to commemorate the fallen of the Boer war. More about the statue can be found here.Royal Scots Greys Monument, Princes Street Garden, Edinburgh

On the theme of ‘seen that here before’, the other photo is of one of my favourite buildings in Edinburgh – West Register House. Set in west side of Charlotte Square this one-time church is now part of the Nation Archives; but the building still retains much of its grandeur and pressence. From its site it looks across the square and has an uninterrupted view down George Street to the RBS building at the other end in St Andrews Square. I love this building for its green dome and golden top; standing taller than anything else around it, it looks especially good on crisp autumnal walks.Charlotte Square and West Register House, Edinburgh


“Isn’t it Getting Dark Early?”

It was a busy old weekend, not quite sure where it went, but then again do I ever? Sure, losing Saturday morning because of Friday evening was pretty much all of my own making, but it sure did shorten the weekend.Bike going along a track

Water of leith and Murrayfield stadiumNot that I spent it all sleeping – far from it. Since Thursday’s jam making session, I’ve spent the evening in the pub, a morning feeling ever-so-slightly sorry for myself, made a Christmas cake, taken the dog for three walks, made a risotto, been out for a cycle (and somehow ended up buying a bottle of wine and a jumper, as you do), made a ham, chicken and leek pie, and labelled the jams. All of this has kind of limited my time for writing blog posts.Clouds at sunset

As luck would have it though, walking the dog was later on Saturday (delayed due to Christmas cake creation) which meant that the sun was setting when we got down to the shore – I do like sunsets, not sure if I’ve mentioned it before – and it was also wonderfully crisp [read: bloody freezing] on Sunday when I went for a ride on my new bike, both of which led to some photo taking. Combined with the phrase I’ve heard so many times in the last week – you’d think with the clocks going back at this time every year we’d realise it got dark earlier, but seemingly not, I’m as guilty as everyone for saying it – I think they sum up the non-food part of my weekend quite well. Hope you enjoy.Sunset at Granton, firth of forthReflection of trees in the water, at sunset


Instagrammers Anonymous: Baking and Long Weekends

If you’re feeling that last weekend seems a rather long time ago then you’ll probably be quite glad it’s Friday. And Friday means -as we all know – that it’s time for Instagrammers Anonymous.

Last weekend saw a lot of dog walking in the distinctly non-autumnal sun. More of the photos can be viewed over here, but this is what the river looks like at the narrow point where it goes under the old bridge.River Almond

On Sunday I – as I’ve mentioned before (it’s been a slow news week) – I attempted to bake with yeast for the first time. I made Swedish cinnamon buns, since it was National Cinnamon Bun Day in Sweden last Thursday (didn’t you know?). They were quite a handy treat to take into the office to cheer up everyone’s Monday morning.Swedish Cinnamon Buns!

As this publishes I’m actually on a train. I decided to use up some of my remaining annual leave and go visit a friend who’s about to go to Australia for a few months; so I’m having an impromptu long weekend. It also made me realise that my railcard had expired which wasn’t too handy for my thus-invalid tickets, but after a quick bit of online shopping my new one arrived in the post in the nick of time. It was then that I discovered that I have five years worth of them with a photo taken when I was 17. Oops. Thankfully I looked like a 12 year old then, and have only since progressed to 14, so I doubt anyone will notice.

Whatever you’re up to this weekend, enjoy, and I will bring back tales of Yorkshire next week.