Arriving early for my Saturday bridesmaiding duties, I took the opportunity of a free afternoon on Friday to explore Edinburgh for the first time. As a thorough-bred Londoner, I am usually of the opinion that other cities may have unique characters, unusual quirks and points of interest, but London is always the Daddy. But, I am forced to admit, that Edinburgh took me utterly by surprise on all fronts. From the dark and towering Victorian architecture, to the views of distant snow-capped peaks, to the perfect hot chocolate in one of the city's many little cafes, I absolutely fell in love.
With only a few hours at our disposal, my companion and I took a whistle-stop tour of the place, fitting in what seemed to be the most important destinations - namely, the Christmas market, a few boutique shops and, naturally, Harvey Nichols. Castle? Shmastle! We both fell upon The Red Door Gallery, which prides itself on showcasing the work of upcoming artists and seemed, to me, to be the retail equivalent of this very blog - so brimful was it with fun design ideas.
Secondly, my companion went absolutely jingle bells to find his Xmas jumper in Oddities - a venerable co-operative of creativity, fusing clothes, art and music all under one super-cool roof. I however, felt rather partial towards a massive bright purple bag that could have fitted in at least two small children.
Finally, buoyed by several jugs of mulled wine from the Christmas market, we wound our merry way to Harvey Nichols, where I was fascinated to find it packed not with the usual wealthy urban professionals found in the London branch, but hoards of well-dressed students seeking inspiration and sartorial guidance. I even overheard one young man rebuff his friend with a terse 'I told you, they don't do sushi, you idiot'. Ah, the modern young!