Fay Young

curiosity about the ways of the world

Winds of change at The Botanics

With rich irony the latest exhibition at Inverleith House is titled I Still Believe in Miracles. But no miracle is likely to save the art gallery from closure after the doors shut on a show celebrating 30 years at the heart of contemporary art in Edinburgh. Continue reading

Life on the edge

View of cloud-fringed Cuillins of Skye, from Soay, photograph by Jemma Cholawo

Soay bay: photograph by Jemma Cholawo

Because it’s Friday…a trip to another world, not so very far away as the seagull flies. After writing the last post about Island on The Edge, I heard from Anne Cholawo in an email with  a link to her YouTube film about her life on Soay.  Continue reading

Island on the Edge

It’s such a gloriously improbable tale. A young woman on the last day of her holiday on Skye spots an old croft house for sale in an estate agents window. What happens next is the stuff of dreams at the end of a hard working week. Continue reading

Red Skye at night

The great giants are crumbling one by one.

The Gendarme and the Cubaid are gone

and the trees are sliding to the shore

on Scorrybreck

Morag Henriksen

This is not about Brexit though goodness knows it was hard to escape the rumblings, crumblings and forebodings of separation among the unexpectedly European gathering on Skye. Continue reading

Backstage Gossip: blurring the lines

Have you heard the one about Miles Jupp at the Underbelly? Or Johnny Vegas at The Stand? Perhaps you picked up a word or two about Frankie Boyle challenging Jerry Sadowitz to a standup in the street (he wasn’t joking)? Continue reading

Dare we learn how the other half lives?

While the Chilcot report validates public outrage at the UK’s disastrous decision to invade Iraq thirteen years ago, the full consequences of Brexit have still to unfold. How will the future judge our self-inflicted constitutional crisis of 2016? Continue reading

Shoulder to shoulder: head to head

On foot, squeezed into cars, standing in vans, riding pillion, pedalling on cycles, swarming citywards by every road and route, London came yesterday morning doggedly and cheerfully to work.

Plucky Londoners. It sounds very familiar. I can almost hear the voice of Boris undermining the effect of a public transport strike any 21st century day of the week. In fact it’s on the front page of The British Gazette, the government newspaper rustled up during the General Strike of 1926. Continue reading

Are we inviting the storms?

Oddly, almost eerily, quiet today. For nights over the last week the house has rocked with angry sound. First Gertrude then Henry came rattling at the windows, hammering on the doors, playing merry hell round the chimneys. The latest storms have blown over but surely Imogen will not be far behind? Continue reading

Here’s to hibernation

It’s cold. Half way through January when the new year no longer feels festive, that’s when I realise the winter slog is only just beginning. But there’s a kind of comfort in the snow. Continue reading

Sunset song for the winter solstice

The winter sun just hangs over the ridge of the Coolags. Its setting will seal the shortest day of the year, the winter solstice.

So wrote George Mackay Brown, the observant eye of the great Orkney poet seeking out the touch of magic conjured up by the Neolithic architects who created Maeshowe with hard-hewn rock and a knowing eye on the heavens. Continue reading

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