While living and working in Edinburgh in 2008 I set out to write one million words in 366 days... but only managed 800,737.

Monday, September 22, 2008

The Home of Modern Thought

I’m back from Greece with photos and observations:

The most important word in any language is Thank You. (I know it’s two words in English… Let’s not ruin my epigram with semantics).

Ugly buildings look a lot better in black and white.

In Greece, it is not unusual to be halfway through your starter and receive your main course, and all this only five minutes after entering the restaurant. It is also common to sit with empty plates and glasses for hours without being bothered until you actually lasso someone in order to get the bill.

There is inefficiency in both the U.K. and Greece, but they are very different kinds of inefficiency; just as in English the same letters can have several different pronunciations, while in Greek several letters have the same pronunciation.

Greek Orthodox priests are just as interested in the stamps in their passport as your and me.

They also read novels and listen to iPods… at the same time.

(There were two priests on the same flights as us from Athens to Amsterdam, and Amsterdam to Edinburgh. I really wanted to know their final destination, but if I asked, I was worried it might invite a religious answer).

The sun sets everywhere, everyday, but not all sunsets are equal. I don’t think I’ll go as a far as calling the sunset over Santorini the second best natural phenomena to the Northern Lights (as I overheard one Brit proclaim), but I did use the sunset setting on my TZ3 an awful lot.

It was a glorious day in Edinburgh today. I'm not being sarcastic, even though it was 14 degrees. I like autumn. The squirrels are active. Bad weather isn't as disappointing; good weather is treated as a blessing. The walk home this evening in the weak but unobstructed sun in just a shirt, watching the world wind down for winter, has returned a glow to this city I temporarily call home.

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