My sister told me the other day, just as she was getting on the bus to go home after a visit, that I should get on with writing my blog as she was fed up looking at the same blog entry all the time, so today I am going to look back….. to before Christmas, when I went round the Christmas market in Edinburgh. Jean and I had met in the city, basically to exchange Christmas presents and have lunch, then go to the Christmas market in Princes Street Gardens (named for the sons of George III), which was right opposite where Jean had chosen for our lunch.
We had an excellent view of the Old Town of Edinburgh, with the hill, Arthur Seat, behind, and the market with the Big Wheel dominating the foreground. I really fancied a ride on it, especially as this new wheel had pods rather than ski tow type chairs as on the last one. After lunch Jean had to get her bus home to East Lothian, so I was left on my own to wander round the stalls and try out the Big Wheel. Daylight is in short supply in the middle of winter, so already in early afternoon the fairy lights were lit around the stalls. It all looked very festive.
The wheel came to a stop and the queue of new passengers, including me, climbed into the little red pods and were soon floating up over the gardens looking down on the sights below: the art gallery in the mid background, and part of the castle rock beyond, and in the opposite direction, the Scott monument, Princes Street and the city centre shops, the Waverley Market and the railway station, the North Bridge and Calton Hill…..
Strangely when I was looking at a friend’s photos some days later she showed me a beautiful two tiered carousel which she said was right next to the Big Wheel. I hadn’t seen it, I told her, and the photo above, looking down on a square of stalls seems to prove it! I think it had to have been moved from that position between her visit and mine, otherwise I would have photographed it too. I photographed just about everything else!!!
After several revolutions of the wheel, during which it grew steadily darker, we had had our turn, and returned to earth. The food stalls were bustling with people wanting to taste the various products on offer – doughnuts and chai-latte, among the goodies on offer here. The cook had his chef’s hat on over his hood, keeping his ears from the cold nip of the winter air.
more decorations and snow globes…. Everything was there! By now it was quite dark and lights were on all over the city. Though I don’t have a good camera for taking night shots I managed to get a couple that weren’t so terrible…the Old Town stretching from the castle down the ridge of the Royal Mile
and across Princes Street Gardens to the Balmoral Hotel, once the North British, at the East End, as far as the lights of the Big Wheel.
Talk again soon.