Sunday, May 31, 2009

Celebrating Writers

It's refreshing to be in a country where writers are not only appreciated, but revered. Edinburgh, in particular, knows how to celebrate their rich history with wordsmiths. There's a Writer's Museum devoted to the lives and works of Robert Louis Stevenson, Walter Scott and Robbie Burns. Literary pub tours leave from the museum every day to explore the literary connection with a variety of pubs in the area. The sidewalk is engraved with quotes from many authors who have entertained in the years since these great men. The Elephant House was not only the alleged birthplace of Harry Potter. It is also frequented by Ian Rankin and Alexander McColl-Smith.

It's hard not to be inspired by the attention that writers attract around here. This may be a holiday but Bracken has really come alive for me here. I didn't get to his home just outside Dunkeld but a walk along Loch Lee gave me a great sense of his character. Bracken fern is prevalent along there, growing abundantly and with tenacity in some instances where it clung to the rocks. The stags we saw to the right of the trail were magnificent; not to mention the damage their hooves do to the young ferns.

What really made that day a writing experience was the fleece I found at the bottom of the keep. Every few steps there was another clump. After awhile I had stuffed my pockets as full as possible. I doubt there's enough to make a hat. As I desperately wanted to safely bring it home, I emailed Stashaholic and asked her how to clean it. There I was, in my friend's flat with buckets and soap and towels cleaning and washing the fleece. There was some interesting vegetation in there - and some other stuff I didn't examine too closely. I did make notes for the Sweater Book.

Do you think Walter Scott hid in the hills or went raiding in order to give authenticity to Rob Roy?


  1. Wow. That is something. I can't imagine walking and pubbing in places frequented by such talented writers. Did you do a lot of pub-crawling with RLS?

  2. A literary pub crawl. And I'm sure they only buy it for the great articles.

    It sounds like you are cramming the hours full of memories. Can't wait to see what becomes of your fleece!

  3. If not a hat, maybe a tea cozy?

    I am getting more jealous by the minute of your Scotland adventure. I'm glad you were able to go.

  4. Diane (TT)2:49 PM

    How about part of something? VERY cool to have fleece that you picked up yourself. Perhaps you could spin it with some cotton from the cottonwoods (do you have cottonwoods near you? Ours are peaking about now, so perhaps yours will still be shedding seeds when you get home).

    You didn't run into any pirates in pubs, did you? Maybe they're in taverns, instead.