Back in February, having spent a couple of days wandering around London, I noticed an interesting looking church in the eastern suburbs of Edinburgh from the train. I thought I really ought to go and have a look. Sometime.
I realised that the were many areas of the city I had never visited, including that which housed the church – despite having spent more than twenty years, on and off, living in Edinburgh.
And so I decided to start a new project. Random Walks around the city, taking me to new places and letting me see the city with fresh eyes.
I decided, but I didn’t actually start. The weather in February and March and April was pretty awful; May I was away; and the summer was glorious, and I was busy.
Down in London again in October, I was again exploring bits of the city I had never been to before, coming across interesting buildings and reminders of history, as well as parts I knew well. And on return to Edinburgh, I put my idea fit a new project into action.
Using a random number between 1 and 360 to give a direction, I look at a map and see what there is, between two and three miles away. Then I head off to walk there, trying to take in streets I don’t know.
This isn’t perfect. In one direction, the sea cuts me off at 1.5 miles; in another, Holyrood Park and Arthur’s Seat occupy a large amount of the space. Sometimes I take a wrong turning and don’t actually get to where I was aiming. But once or twice a week for the last month, I have gone out to look at new places. And it is still pretty random.
I take photographs on the way (and back). Not all the routes can be unknown – there are only so many roads from my flat – and I have covered very nearly the same ground twice, after only one month.
But I have also seen lots of new things, and been to places I would have no need to go to otherwise.
The photos from these walls will be posted with the handy title “Random Walks”, and the posts will be tagged like that, too, should you want to catch up on them.