I had no specific reason to stop in Glasgow. No site that I wanted to see, no story that drew me to the city. The only hazy reason I had was to filter out the tourists who come for the history in Edinburgh and the stunning beauty of the Highlands and shake out the everyday people onto the streets. This vague notion came alive that day and shaped into what I like to term life goes on.
Glasgow was hurried, smoky and dusty on the Friday morning that I arrived. Locals jostled to get to work amidst the weekend shoppers on Style Mile. Yes, you heard me – Style Mile :) While I giggled at the parallelism of this name with Edinburgh’s Royal Mile (though they are miles away from each other in spirit, pardon the pun), I was also immensely happy to be among the Scottish locals. THIS is what I really needed – something to strongly anchor in my head that regardless of either being a tourist or seeing a zillion of them, life goes on as normal and we are all the same at the end of the day. It was refreshing!
I cannot resist a cathedral, and was drawn towards Glasgow’s massive one in the town’s tiny medieval quarter. Right by it was the Glasgow Necropolis which spooked me out instantly. This is a giant graveyard about 200 years old where the rich of the Victorian era built almost life-size tombstones. Life-size. And death. The contrast was unnerving, and the hilltop filled with these was an eerie reminder of “ashes to ashes, dust to dust”. Brr.
Glasgow was also the birthplace of modern architecture (art nouveau). After gawking at Norman, Renaissance and Baroque, I figured this would be my next “thing to learn”. The best part I liked was the cool lighting fixtures in the picture below. The flash of purple from certain angles had me captivated, ignoring the flash of pink from the other side :)
Glasgow was a great city break. Now I know a little more about how to chart the kind of itinerary that will give me a sampling of most things in a country.