Day 11

24th August 2022 – Wednesday – 7.45pm

Start at the stone throne off Wester Hailes Quarry Park

Warm

Sunny

Still

The sound of football

and

ice-cream van chimes

Heading away from

the sunset

Thinking of the Quarry

and the mighty

stone

all the hustle

and bustle

heft and haul

sweet physical labour

noise and swell

once ringing out

from this place

And long before

that

Hailes = a plural

word signifying

“mounds or hillocks”

and

Colinton = may mean

the town of Colin

or be derived from

a Gaelic word

signifying “a hollow”

1805

Excerpt from Amanda Thomson’s work for EAF

Places change

The question is

who decides

and why

Who has access

and what are we

allowed to do there

will we allow and

support a place

“simply” to be in its

own quiet way

Tended and cared

for but not in

your face

A space and a place

that sits unannounced

no entertainment

laid on, no tickets,

no timings

A place that invites

us to be, together,

to find ourselves,

where we have

choice and simplicity

and abundance.

Where we and it,

and others

can meet each other,

A union of another kind

“A lot of planning that

we do wants to

deny the fact of time

wants to put on

imprint

a screen down on a

city that says

This is what it

should look

like

in so doing

you are repressing

in your planning

the capacity

of people

to make history

in the places

where they

are

A city that continues to

grow

contains a

lot of

incompleteness

if all of it is

regulated

then an object

is likely to die

because the form

is

TOO BRITTLE

TOO RIGID

TOO FIXED”

RICHARD SENNETT

I move faintly

flexibly

fluently

freely

fully

Sensing the feel

of the motion

coming to know

a place

responding to its

invitations

moving the air

and feeling the

still and the quiet

People are too-ing

and fro-ing

A man with a

bottle of red,

almost done,

comes to

greet me

He’s in a happy

place!

The lights on

the tow path

twinkle, red

and green and

white

There’s a “green man”

weathered into the

stone of the bridge

we smile at each other

and holes in the

sressed stones

a footprint of the

past, a gate

perhaps, or a

place to tie the

horses

I dig my hands deep

into the silt of

the canal

It’s soft and squidgy

and warm

It sticks to my

hands

and stays there

into the night

And my hands move

like

magic

conjuring

beings

NEXT ENCOUNTER:

Thursday 25th August

1pm

Near Stoneypath Bridge and Redhall Footbridge

Making my way to the city