Water of Leith walk

The plan for Sunday was a bike ride to the Gallery of Modern Art. Unlike the National Gallery, which is right in the heart of Edinburgh city centre –  the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art is a bit more of a trek to get to. A perfect his and hers plan – some physical activity and some culture.

It was Sunday though so things took a little while to get going, and then we needed a little while to gather our things together. I put on my mascara and the boyfriend made sure the bike lights were functional and we had high vis garments. It is dark here at the moment by 4pm – so even a short-ish day out on the bikes requires lights.
Then as everything appeared to be ready problem one arose. Where was the key to his bike? The search began. Twenty minutes later I found it tucked into a bag buried under this and that hanging from the bed post.
So we left the flat.
Then problem two arose. My bike key mysteriously no longer fit my bike lock. I tried. No luck. He tried. No luck. We frowned. We puzzled. We sprayed the lock with something-or-other. We frowned some more.
Then we took the bike lights and high vis garments back upstairs and went for a walk to the Gallery.
It took us through the Old Town – still wonderful to this colonials eyes.
Crossing The Mound -from old town to new- Edinburgh
Then we passed through the New Town, and dropped down into Stockbridge.
A new neighbourhood for me to explore – and a Sunday Produce market.
Stockbridge Sunday Produce Market
After we dragged ourselves away from the tasty produce – with the backpack a little heavier, we took the steps down to the Water of Leith path.
It was a lovely Autumn day, the sun was out, the sky was blue – but in November the sun does not reach down to the little humans down on the ground. It was still a very pretty walk.
Water of Leith
I loved getting to see this different part of the city along the river – and being on foot rather than on the bikes allowed me to see much more, and dawdle taking photos. Gardens, grand old homes, new homes, historic monuments, the water burbling away, other people out enjoying their Sunday – magic.

Waterside monument – Water of Leith

Autumn sunlight

Dean Bridge

Then we got to the gallery. Housed in two grand old buildings, one on either side of the road, the landscaped surrounds are art works themselves and Gallery ONE and TWO each have their very own Tracy Emin neon light sculpture. I love neon, and I have followed Tracy Emin ever since I saw a video of hers in an exhibition in Sienna in 2005, titled ‘Why I never became a dancer.’ As with so much of her work – the neon sculptures are in turns uplifting and melancholic.

Tracy Emin – ‘Everything Is Going To Be Alright’

Tracy Emin -‘There Will Be No Miracles Here’ and castle view

My other highlight from the day was seeing Sir Eduardo Paolozzi’s studio. Entering a room of still life’s you suddenly find yourself transported into the artist’s chaotic, crammed studio. I wont pretend to have ever heard of his work before – but I loved immersing myself into the mind, living space, workspace of this sculptor.

After all that I was well and truly ready for a coffee – and the galleries coffee shop provided the perfect fuel to power us home, good coffee sitting under our very own giant robot sculpture. Now that is a good day out.  

3 thoughts on “Water of Leith walk”

  1. Hi Sandy
    It was great to meet you at the travel writing workshop last week – can't imagine there was anything said that you didn't already know so thanks for not falling asleep! Yours is a great blog… Anne


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