I had an incredibly lovely time in Edinburgh visiting mt best friend Lou, her husband, Dave, and her beautiful and wonderfully placid son, Ronan.
I must admit I felt a terrible friend. Ronan was born on my birthday in 2009 and while I flew up to see him for a mere 24 hours a few days after his birth, I have been too busy working(amazing how we get our priorities wrong sometimes!) to see him since then. I am so pleased I finally made the effort even if it was only for 48 hours this time.
Lou is looking rather radiant at the moment, she is 6 months pregnant and it suits her, and this despite looking after a 13-month old too! It hasn't been easy for Lou and her husband, Dave, the last few years; their first born son, Rudy, died in utero a few days before his due date in 2008, and then a few months later she sadly suffered a miscarriage. Thankfully Ronan arrived healthy and sleepy, in fact he virtually slept for his first 4 months!!
I know I am biased but he is truly beautiful and we had great fun playing with his toys and getting very excited at watching him take his first few steps. In fact it was fascinating watching him trying to walk. He kept putting his weight into his heels and would end up falling backwards onto his bum, but when he got the balance right between toes and heels, well he managed 7 steps all in one go!!!
We managed to get out into Edinburgh for the first day of the Edinburgh festival too. Lou and I took Ronan to a children's show, which was rather entertaining, before meeting up with Rach, Lou's younger sister and another good friend of mine, and Hayley who was up visiting Rach from her home in London. It is ages since the 4 of us have been together so we ate lunch together at a local Mosque kitchen before enjoying the festival ambiance and sharing a few glasses of wine (except Lou of course, she is on best wine behaviour at the moment!). Edinburgh is a beautiful city and really shines during the festival. Thank you girls for a fab time.
On my last morning we even managed to visit Lou's parents, who I call Mummy and Daddy Goulding on account of the fact I spent just as much time at their house as I did at my own during my late teens and early twenties. It was lovely to see them again and also to take the scenic route out of Edinburgh and around the coast to Haddington where they live - I am looking forward to visiting more of Scotland in the future as I have a feeling it offers some stunning scenery.
Of course it was sad leaving, the 48 hours passed very quickly. Despite everything Lou is an incredibly grounded, balanced and wise person and her energy and attitude towards life certainly helps to balance my own rather hectic approach a times! I never seem to relax as well as I do with Lou, in fact it was wonderful to spend the evenings chilling on the sofa (something I never manage to do on my own!) and getting much needed early nights...it was a struggle to get out of bed in the morning as I slept so well!!
Needless to say I have already booked my flights back up to Edinburgh in November so I can go and help Lou for a few days when she has given birth to her little daughter. I can't wait!!
Lots of love to you all up in Edinburgh and enjoy the rest of the festival.