James Masterson walked down Dalry road towards the railway bridge crossing the street. Yet again he was hit with the realisation that his town was crumbling under his feet. The loose paving stones, patched up tarmac and leaking rubbish bins felt like an insult. As if the very ground tried to reject the pavement, the tarmac flaking off like dead skin off the earths crust. Pulsing ready-to-pop rubbish bins like spots on an imperfect skin.
He was angry. Angry with himself and with the world, for letting his city and his country down like this. Why could Edinburgh not keep its heritage and its pride? Why was Scotland falling apart? None of the age-old history seemed to have any impact on the people around him. James Masterson sent out thoughts of hate and anger, desperately wanting to force a man in a dirty grey track suit to look up the meaning of the word solidarity before shouting loud abuse to the tramp curled up in the corner of the city farm.
The out of place greenery of the farm and its animal pens did not cheer people up as much as remind them of just how far away from the fresh air of the countryside they actually were.
To James the tramp looked just as out of place as the farm, wedged in between houses with tangles of cables hanging like dead ivy over broken mortar. How can the world in 2013 not have made it further than this?
As he approached the railway bridge James felt the first few drops of rain from the upcoming storm hit his forehead. He only just made it under cover before the heavens opened and a roar of rain hit the pavement. He turned up the hood of his lightweight jacket and stood under the bridge. He slowly felt the stench of the pigeon colony that lived high up in the darkness under the bridge start to reach his nose as the rain moistened the heaps of excrement on the pavement. Hidden pigeons. The filth of the city. Rats with wings. James sent off a thought to the tramp, hoping he had a place to hide too, somewhere to keep hidden from rain and abuse and the shame of a broken city.
He sighed, closed his eyes, and there and then he knew.
Edinburgh was his place and his home. He loved this city. He would never leave.