360 degrees

img_0412Growing up on five acres of land in a semi-rural community, I have always appreciated vast spaces and felt revived by time spent in the outdoors. Before I came to Edinburgh, I had written up a “Don’t Leave Edinburgh Before You Do This” list, and, big surprise, climbing Arthur’s Seat was sitting (totally unintentional pun, by the way) right in the first position. And it certainly deserves that number one spot. Scaling Arthur’s Seat has been a highlight of my time in Edinburgh thus far, and I imagine that it will remain one (if not, I’ll need to change my home page photo).

The trek: Three friends from my study abroad program and I opted for the middle path to the summit on a cool but semi-sunny Sunday morning. Just about an hour and several steep inclines later, we all reached the top. Though highly aware of the possibility of being blown off the mountain by the strong winds once I made it to the lookout point, I quickly became mesmerized by the 360 degree view the trail had led to. Suddenly, up on that high place, the city centre became quite small and the deep blue water of the North Sea was in easy sight. Just like the initial descent during my flight into Edinburgh, I could not wipe the smile off my face. There is something so special about nature – it has innate value, and I was just one of many visitors to Arthur’s Seat who had the opportunity to appreciate its existence that day.

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