12 things you miss about Edinburgh when you leave

On his year abroad, Rory McIvor reminisces on things he misses most about bonnie Edinburgh.

1.Bake Sales outside the library. Specifically the, “No, I’m alright thanks” swiftly followed by a weakly executed smile of compassion… just to make sure they know you’re actually a good person who just didn’t want cake at half 8 on a Tuesday.

2.The friendly “Alright pal, got any spare change?” that greeted you every morning at the bottom of the Playfair steps.

3.The bridges. Nothing beats a stroll across North Bridge as the sun sets.

The Castle from North Bridge


4. The excitement of a Friday afternoon. Particularly the weekly recurring conversation in which you declared that would finally get round to seeing the Improverts that night. You never did, but a night spent in the pub wasn’t a terrible alternative.

5. The Standing Order. The stunning old Union Bank building on George Street deceptively plays host to the haven of burliness and potential debauchery that has institutionalised the name of Wetherspoon in our country. The distinctive aroma of sweat and stale-beer has even the least nostalgic of nostrils pining for just one more pint.

6. The gleaming white-skin of Edinburgh students who flood The Meadows en masse at the first sight of March sunshine.

Meadows in the Sun

BBQ anyone?

7.  The buildings. Particularly the perennial claim made over both New and Old College by all students showing off the university to visiting family and friends. “Yeh, I’ve got classes there 4 times a week.”-Harry, 3rd Year Sports Recreation and Management.

Some of them are really nice too

Of course this would be the Law School.

8. Sainsbury’s/Tesco/Margiotta reduced sections. There’s nothing better than finding a garlic bread or pasta sauce LESS than half price. And if you like Quorn, you’re on to a winner.

Mmm, tasty.

Mmm, tasty.

9. Oversized flannel shirts. Self-rolled cigarettes behind ears. Beanie hats worn indoors. Until you leave, there is nothing but contempt for the edgy Edinburgh scene, but this revered crowd of nouveau couture social catalysts makes up a strangely comforting part of the library scenery.

10. The Royal Mile at the weekend. The proud label of ‘resident’ allows you to look satisfyingly sanctimoniously at the hoards of tourists meandering their way past the kilt laden and ‘I heart Scotland’ shop windows on the Royal Mile. Weaving your way through this jolly band actually makes for rather good exercise’, if you have no time for intra-mural sport, this serves as a very satisfactory substitute!

Royal Mile

11. Black-tie. Edinburgh students will use any excuse to dress up. As soon you don that dickie-bow, you know you’re in for a big night.

Dressing all fancy and a bit of Scottish dancing. Classic Edinburgh.

Dressing all fancy and a bit of Scottish dancing. Classic Edinburgh.

And finally…

12. Teviot Nachos. A mountain of meaty, cheesy, semi-Mexican goodness for under a fiver.

Teviot Nachos