Apologies, for my Blogmas fail. What was I thinking? I work in RETAIL! It’s DECEMBER!
Yep. I was mad. I think we can determine that I have not and will not manage a post for every day of Advent!
However, though I’m not doing proper vlogmas on YouTube (just too much) I am trying to put up a very short video each day on my instagram page. And I’m taking part in the Penguin Books Christmas Challenge there too. You’ll be sick of the sight of my face and my books by 2017.
This week has been crazy, but in the midst of it something super special happened. My friend Holly came to Edinburgh with her Mum. And one of my days off fell during her visit (this so rarely happens, my friend Daniela was over in Scotland from Italy the week of Black Friday and I never got to see her at all). Holly has been here three times before, so rather than repeat what we had already done, we decided to get a bus to the Royal Botanic Gardens. RBGE is somewhere I spent a lot of my childhood and teenage years but now I don’t live as close by so I hadn’t been there for a long time. We walked in through the East Gate, and the first sign we saw pointed towards something I assume must be a fairly recent addition to the Gardens because I don’t remember seeing it before. A National Memorial Garden for Organ and Tissue Donors in Scotland. Nothing could have been more poignant for us to see, as it was exactly 2 months to the day that Holly had received a life saving transplant.
We took some time looking at the work they had done, and working out the words etched into stone. One of the most meaningful being these “nothing that ends in a gift ends in nothing”
I’ve since looked up the artist who was commissioned to create this wonderful space, his name is Alec Finlay. He has written about the process of contemplating and creating it on his blog. What a humble and wise person he seems.
And of course, we saw lots of squirrels. This epitomises how they felt about me trying to snap a picture of them.
Afterwards, we headed back into the city centre to get some lunch, called up Rebecca (who was on a break at work) and took a wander around the Christmas Market. And if you’ve been following my instagram feed you know we went to see one of the most important icons of Edinburgh’s Christmas: The Jenner’s Christmas Tree.
As I look back on this last year, it’s been pretty darned sucky. But days like this make it so much better as I am reminded in a massive way of how lucky I am to have great friends. And how lucky we are that a family who lost were so generous to give a gift that has given not just to our friend, but all of us who love her.