Thursday, September 23, 2010
Everywhere I found reminders that Scots love stories, and began to understand why, in 2004, Edinburgh was selected as the first UNESCO City of Literature. Only three other cities (Melbourne, Iowa City, Dublin) have gained this distinction, which recognizes publishing, writing, festivals and encouragement of the written word.
Piercing the skyline to the north, and a constant reminder of Edinburgh’s literary heritage, is an ornate Victorian Gothic statue commemorating Sir Walter Scott (Ivanhoe, Lady of the Lake). Known affectionately as Edinburgh’s Rocket, it is the world’s tallest statue to honour an author.
For lunch, I savoured an ale and a dram at the Oxford Bar, the pub of choice for the gruff Inspector Rebus in Ian Rankin’s internationally acclaimed murder mysteries.