Glasgow And Me, Part Three

This is the weather they warned me about. It has been rainy, grey, and chilly almost continuously since last Saturday afternoon. Throw in the shortness of the day, and the resulting atmosphere is relatively gloomy.
 

Clouds

 
But if this is how Glasgow gets its exquisitely rich greenery, and if the short winter days mean short summer nights, and it took two months of my residence to get a week-long string of cold, rainy days — that’s not bad. The rain’s supposed to dry up over the weekend, and a few days with no precipitation will be a good thing. The fallen leaves are dissolving slowly into a slippery cellulose goo that I’ll be pleased to be rid of. But I like Glasgow, and this weather is part of the deal. (Also, I should remember to goose up the heat in the flat, but not till I get back from my Saturday morning cup of coffee.)
 
I’m getting used to traffic on the left. When I arrived, my reflexes made me look for traffic on the US sides of the street, even when I knew that the traffic would be coming the other direction. My operating premise was, “There’s a car headed toward me, but I don’t know where it’s coming from.” I must have been a spectacle — even more than usual — flicking my head one direction, then the other. After a while, I’d get to the street, stop and think, look in the UK directions, take a quick look around to make sure there wasn’t a vehicle coming from an unexpected direction, and then cross. Now I’m pretty good at just looking in the needful directions.
 
I’d be pleased to find a restaurant that served a varied menu of vegetarian-friendly fare (in other words, maybe a gluten-free entree or two). The prominence of meat (and carbs) in Scotland’s diet impresses me.
 
No glitches in my bank account for the past few weeks. I realize that that shouldn’t be a big deal, but after the headaches getting it started, I’m not taking this for granted.
 
Oh, and speaking of things getting sorted, my landlord came by last week and saw to the joiner’s putting a new lock on the door. To my utter delight, the lock and key work very smoothly together, so I can walk up, unlock the door, and proceed directly into my flat, instead of arriving at my door and spending an awkward minute or so trying to negotiate with the older lock over whether I deserved to be admitted. Opening a door is not usually counted a particular delight, but I’ve felt a small surge of satisfaction each time I walked up to the door and simply opened it.
 Hmm, maybe I’ll add to this list if I think of more updates, but it’s getting late for me to head to Byres Road for coffee.

6 comments / Add your comment below

  1. AKMA, The weather there sounds very similar to the weather here in Oregon, cloudy, rainy, and dark. I too was warned about the effects of the dreary weather. Every time I get a chance to run out and stand in a brief puddle of sunshine, I take it! Peace, Court.

  2. Sounds like your former lock was sort of like having to give the password to enter a House at Hogwarts. Glad you don’t have to negotiate any longer over whether you deserve to be admitted!

  3. Two days of sunshine in a row — top of the world, Court!
     
    Lauren, it’s the simple things. I just walk up to the door, slide the key into the lock, and bingo! I wouldn’t have realized how annoying it was, having to fiddle with the older lock indefinitely; now that I just breeze in, I can’t imagine going back.

  4. Oh my. Do I remember the gloomy! Through all these intervening years (32 of them, yikes!) whenever the weather is misty, drizzly, damp and chilly I think “Scotland weather.” And in my memory dusk came about 3 in the afternoon in late fall. On the other hand, I distinctly remember being amazed to see roses on my street in Edinburgh still in bloom in December. When it finally did drop below freezing, I felt fabulous…the penetrating dampness was gone. Everyone around me was moaning “Ach, it’s bitter cold.”

  5. One of my students explained to me yesterday afternoon that she could tell I wasn’t a true Scotsman, since I counted the consecutive days of rain rather than consecutive days of sunshine.
     
    But we had two frosty days in a row, so at least some of dampness has gone out of the air, and my flat is very modern, so I don’t have climate problems at home (one of our postgrads noted that she pays £90 a month for heat in wintertime; I won’t be anywhere near that).

  6. On the subject of indoor climate…the home I lived in during the fall of 1977 had no central heat, just a space heater or fire in whichever room was being used. I saved money by not using the coin-operated heater in my bedroom at night.
    It’ll be fun to trade more Scotland stories at Christmastime.

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