Last time, I discussed the reasons that led me to head to Glasgow for Christmas, and how I was saved from loneliness by Canadian Amber and Hamish the cat.
On the bus ride to Glasgow, I reflected on how unlike me this was. I consider myself a spontaneous person, but only to a point – normally when strangers and inter-city travel are involved, I’m usually turned off. But ultimately, the thought of being well and truly alone on Christmas day (both my flatmates were away) was too pathetic to face.
So, with a backpack full of ingredients for mulled wine, I arrived at Glasgow Buchanan Bus Station to meet Canadian Amber. Being fair-skinned and ginger, Canadian Amber is the most Scottish looking Canadian I’ve ever met. She is an incredibly interesting person, having lived in small-town Vancouver Island, Victoria, Northern Canada (ew) and Los Angeles (while working in the film industry). She now lives in Glasgow while getting her Master’s Degree. She is also unfailingly kind and eccentric.
As we bussed to Paisley, she warned me that it had the reputation for being a rough neighbourhood. I must admit, I wasn’t entirely comfortable with this. Someone, however, made everything better. Ladies and Gentlemen, Hamish the cat!
On Christmas morning, I helped Hamish open his many gifts.
Canadian Amber and I had homemade eggs benedict for breakfast, then went for a walk around Paisley. No busses were running, almost nothing was open. The sun was shining and the streets were deserted.
We explored Paisley in almost complete solitude – so surreal!
Canadian Amber and I made a delicious poor-man’s Christmas dinner that evening and stayed up way too late drinking various kinds of alcohol and torturing Hamish.
When I went home the next morning, I thought about what kind of person it takes to invite a stranger into their home on Christmas day. I was very appreciative to get a dose of familiar Canadian hospitality for the holidays!