Otter, Ft William, UK
Otter, Ft William, UK
  • Loobleyarna
    • 05/10/2019
Small capital, green city, pretty town,
Lovely to stroll along the river past the cafes and the fountain and the triple bridge and the opera house, all overseen by the castle, all very charming, bakeries selling bureks and pizza and cherry cake everywhere, the occasional flurry of a swarm of Chinese tourists with the clicking of their massive cameras like the thrum of the wings of locusts.

In a poem, every word does a job

Always something wholesome in the main square - Olympic sports taster session, university open day and talent show style performances, free concert, and then a big screen showing the European volleyball championship final, an occasion where early elation turned to muted frustration and then the disappointed crowd fragmenting and melting away like mist burning off from the valleys in the morning.

Recycling everything everywhere - if you remove all general rubbish bins and make recycling easy or unavoidable, then, people do it? It becomes second nature?

Metelkova - a bit like Christiana in Copenhagen, this area of partying squatters is now officially tolerated, and adorned with murals and artistic creations. At night the beer starts flowing and several nightclubs open the doors, and laws are certainly broken. The city centre is covered in street art, scrawled epitaphs and unfortunately, also lots of pointless tags, juxtaposed with the pastel painted walls with the wooden shutters and the patchy cement. And then a park, an allotment, a patch of green.

Crack up, crack down is the title of a graphic art exhibition around the city, covering a range of social commentaries, taboos, satires, etc, and sometimes also aesthetically interesting.
Maximising a day of culture also went to an exhibition of photography, mainly black and white shots of architecture, playing with shapes and textures, light and shadow.
And the national gallery, standard fare through the ages of hideous religious art, nice landscapes, portraits ranging from life-like to offensively ugly (surely unintentionally?)

Staying in one place for a few days gave me a chance to actually meet a few people in a hostel, including french medical student Benoit and Belgian motorbike tourer Joran, two weeks into his first trip after quitting his job, reading Dostoevsky and Buddhism, full of excitement at breaking free and seeing the world for the first time. Somewhat reminds me of my younger self, and he seems happy to use me as a vindication of his decision to break out of the rat race so good luck to him!


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