Having been back in Scotland for a month now you would think I’d be banging the door down to get out again. Surprisingly i have been greeted with mixed feelings on my return.Most people don’t really understand why I’m back in the first place. But i must say I’m pretty happy to be here (more on that later). Of course – not much has changed around me. Still the 300 tonne seagulls,snatching ice creams from chubby toddlers.Still dreaded hippies blocking your path,wrongfully judging and mistaking you, for someone that would give money to Africa after the 5th time of asking.Do us a favour.Just fuck off.And still the same junkie pestering you for cash,every time you cross a road.Could someone please give this poor man a pound to go see ‘his grunny‘.She has been dying in hospital for 6 years now. It’s only a matter of time.Have a heart!In fact give him a fag too. He deserves it for all his contributions to society. Three hours he’s went without breaking into houses,punching students and injecting in McDonald’s toilets.
But I wouldn’t go as far as telling him to fuck off. Jumping in front of the nearest bus would suffice.All three elements make the city look un tidy.
On the other hand i see we have a fancy new shopping centre in ‘Union Square’. Mixed feelings on this really. As much as it is impressive and modern,it is also something we didn’t really need.Ten more shit chain restaurants anyone? A lot of our locally owned restaurants and bistros are struggling to get by and the opening of these new glorified fast food joints isn’t helping. Obviously i am extremely biased but i am worried that Aberdeen is slowly losing its identity.And with the possibility of Union Terrace gardens getting mowed to the ground i am concerned this may be a step further in achieving this and driving another nail in. Will be interesting to see how many of these restaurants see 2011.However just to completely contradict my last point i will be checking out Yo!Sushi as i am a massive sushi fan.Although don’t worry Chef Jang. I will be back for your beautiful food in the near future. You are a legend.
Since being back I’ve realised i have a greater respect for my Country.For anyone that knows me well knows i am pretty passionate anyway,but now,more than ever i am proud of where I’m from. I guess being away has stamped these feelings in well and truly. But I’ve realised that whilst overseas i probably talked about where i was from on a daily basis.When you are constantly meeting new people from different Countries,you are constantly representing your home nation,as well as yourself as a person. So really where you are from becomes a big part of who you are.I’m just back from a little tour of Scotland with someone pretty special. Her name is Petra. She is German and we had a blast exploring places even i had never been. I felt like just as much as a tourist as her,roaming around castles,taking in the highlands and keeping an eye out for Nessy. We we’re lucky enough to get clear blue skies in a chilly February and we had an amazing time. I will be flying the flag for Scotland again when i go over to see her next month. Can’t wait to see her and Germany.
Still in tourist mode and still with a spring in my step i was walking down Union Street on the way home from work the other night. I was taking in the buildings and i realised i had never properly admired and really opened my eyes to the architecture that surrounds us. As dull as Aberdeen can be when its pissing down and freezing cold we really do have some grand,beautifully crafted buildings around us. As i was passing ‘the Howff‘ some older geezer stops me in my tracks. Thinking he was going to ask me for change i didn’t expect much when i took out my headphones. I was absolutely staggered by what he said to me.
I said “What’s up man?What you after?” to which he replied – “Aye just seeing if your alright mate. You look really happy.Keep smiling”.
I muttered out a “eh…cheers pal” as i walked away pretty shocked by what he said. I am under the impression that if you stopped somebody and said something similar anywhere in Scotland, you would receive a swift punch to the face,called a poof and have chips thrown off your head.So i tend to avoid complimenting complete strangers in the dark. And am i ok?? For being happy?? Jesus Christ. How miserable is everyone? Do we all believe that everything around us is shite? Is being happy in this City a foreign concept? Perhaps i will book an appointment with the GP.Maybe this happiness thing will catch on and start an epidemic.
The random stranger did infact have the desired effect though. I carried on smiling all the way home. So i guess in this case i guess if you smile,the whole world – really does – smile with you.
So folks that will wrap it up for now.
For those of you i haven’t seen around yet i know doubt will soon.
Untill then – take it easy.