My friend and former flatmate Hamish is visiting! For the first time since he and Craig moved up to Wick in 2010 he's down for a proper* visit.
Mostly the plan while he's down is to hang out and chat, interspersed with some watching of movies and goofball TV - just like old times really! Since these days we're both self employed, we've both been working today, but also hanging out which has been great fun.
As a change of scenery mid afternoon we took a wander to get some air and to reacquaint Hame with the city he called home for a decade (and which he thinks of as his "Scottish home town"). I took a bit of a gamble in choosing the route and took us through (amongst other things) the new Quartermile development. Work had started there before Hame and Craig left for the frozen North, but (while it's far from finished) the area's begun to feel alive only in the last year or so and I really like it.
I say "gamble" because one of the things Hamish and I have always disagreed on is Modern Architecture. As a rule I love it. As a rule he hates it. Still one of the things I like about Quartermile is the way the old buildings of the former Royal Infirmary have been restored (on the surface at any rate) and re-presenced within the new development.
To my delight the gamble paid off! Walking through the mix of restored sandstone elegance, and stark glass and steel, Hame surprised himself and me by really taking to the place.
It's always nice to get to share this city that I love with visitors... but there was a new dimension in getting to share the changes I'm excited about with someone who's as fond of and attached to this place as I, but no longer usually here.
Anyway, an old fashioned evening of goofy Sci-Fi (frequently paused while we animatedly discuss things that have popped tangentially into our heads no doubt) beckons!
* It isn't actually the "first" visit of course - there have been flying visits since, but this is the first time he's been here for a few days in a stretch.