Hi Sweetie, I’ll be in Scotland for 7 days. Are you able to meet?
Eh??? The last time I saw you was 20 years ago or thereabouts as you put me on the train home from my year abroad after half a bottle of tequila. My recollection is there was a fair amount of tears and promises to stay in touch.
Well here we are, a long time down the road and we are still in touch.
Part of my time at University was spent in Salamanca and I had the good fortune to share a flat with 2 Spaniards, a Catalan and a Mexican. I spoke Spanish the whole time and developed some very unusual swear words. Cesar and I hit it off straight away and he had a love of all things Scottish. He was like something from a movie I kid you not. The cheek bones, the johnny depp hair and he had a leather jacket and boots that made you look twice. He was studying literature at Uni and cut quite the figure as he walked across the plaza mayor. My amigas were quite taken with him – naturally so. However, when you have seen this handsome man in his pjs with his hair looking like fluffy ducks first thing in the morning, it puts a different slant on it!
I have memories of concerts, drinking lots of tea and laughing and you cant imagine my joy that 20 years later it was just as much fun when we met up.
Oh yes, this time we had some more people in tow with us. Namely our respective ladies – C with his girlfriend and me with Mini me.
So a wee Friday evening in Edinburgh.
My opening gambit – you’ve cut your hair.
His – you’ve gone blonde.
He was gracious enough not to mention that I may be a tad more rubenesque than in my svelte days on student life and a diet of curly wurlys and gin.
The conversation was fabulous and we caught up on 20 years of life – studies, music, politics, travels, adventures, the lot. We talked a lot about Brexit, Trump and Erasmus.
My sadness at Brexit is beyond description and my fear is that my little lady wont have the chance to do the crazy things I did (well she can and just not tell me) Being part of Erasmus allowed me to make friends – that I can see 20 years later and catch up with. It allowed me to have adventures that I can use in my teaching (for better or worse) and afforded me a chance to develop my confidence away from the classroom.
I left Cesar in Cafe Royal with a whiskey in his hand and promise of a return visit.
Trip planned for Mexico. With tea bags and trainers.