Since I first came to Scotland, in 2011, I have always felt like there is something special about this place. Within four days I had found myself a new home, a place I since then have felt the strong need to be in.
I was reminded of this now again, five years later, when spending five days working in Edinburgh. On my way back to Stirling I knew that this is where I need to be. Spiritual as it might sound, every puzzle piece just seems to fall into place when I am in Edinburgh.
Usually when I travel I visit a place once, sometimes return to it for some reason, but generally I prefer exploring as many new parts of the world as possible. Scotland, however, seems to be pulling me back time and time again. Every train leads to Edinburgh it seems.
The other day I met with one of my favourite tutors. I asked him how they picked the work placements for us. He said that he knew from the first time he met me that I was an Edinburgh News person. This person did not know that I have lived in Edinburgh. Fascinatingly, he just knew, instantly, that that is where I belong. It is not easy to impress me, but I was taken aback by this ascertainment.
When I started this degree, with English and Journalism as majors, I was not sure if I even wanted to work as a journalist. As I told my professor this, he seemed surprised, as if it was obvious to him that I am becoming a journalist. Because I had spent the past 24 hours being doubtful and considering leaving university after this semester, the extended 15 minutes long meeting I had with my teachers was life-changing.
Some of the professors at this university seem to have the ability to identify what I am destined for before the option has even crossed my mind.
Since my first visit five years ago, many people have asked me what it is about Scotland. They all have seen how beautiful the country is with its green hills and gothic and baronial architecture.
Of course these elements are crucial but there is more to it – it is more about the feeling of being here.
How do we describe feelings? How can I describe in words that every single time I set my foot here, I just feel this strong sense of belonging, that it makes me feel the most like myself and equally like the best version of me.
I could point out several external reasons about Edinburgh (and Scotland in general) that keeps me coming back, but in the end it is about the feeling I have for this place.
Some of the travelers I met when living in Edinburgh would describe the city as “magical”, and although I am not generally a mystic, I do find this the best description I have come across so far.
Scotland has always been a fairytale-land to me.
When I lived in Brighton for a year, I came up here several times because as soon as I’d arrive, I was able to think again. It is as if my whole soul becomes unblocked in Scotland. I can think clearly, feel freely and become the best version of me there is.
Those who have never experienced something similar may not be able to identify with this but many of my friends have a similar feeling for London.
Feeling like this for a place in this chaotic world might be one of the best things there is. It adds a sense of stability to life- a sense of belonging.