I awaken with a parched throat in a cold room. My room. At the foot of the bed lies a canvas shoe. Not my shoe. My mouth feels like it’s had a sock stuffed in it. That will have been the drink. Or was it the joint I vaguely recall blazing before passing out?
Scratches on my hands. An expensive taxi ride. Train tracks. Something about a rose bush.
What happened last night?
I know what was meant to happen last night. Last night I was meant to go drinking in Leith with Colin. Visit a few pubs. Learn about the area. Write a review for Ed Uncovered.
AFAIK, that’s what happened. The getting drunk part was easy; Colin was due me a couple of pints for having proofed his new window cleaning website. Judging by this hangover, he made good on his promise and then some.
Now all I have to do is try and piece together a readable narrative. That won’t be easy. Thankfully, amidst all the schooners and banter, I had the sense to take some notes on the pubs we visited. My notes never let me down. Let’s see what we’ve got from last night…
Jesus Christ. What am I supposed to do with that?
Hang on, surely I took some pictures last night…
A pub menu
A car wash
A car wash? Why the fuck was I photographing a car wash at…
…2:38 in the morning?
An hour earlier, I also sent Princess this abortion of a text:
I know, before I even reach for my laptop, there’ll still be porn playing from the night before. The question is, how bad is it?
Hmm. Could have been worse I guess. Much worse.
As I write these words, I’m still hungover. And stoned. The hangover is most certainly from last night. The stonedness happened more recently.
This is how you turn a bunch of spaghetti into a coherent review.
Ed Uncovered does Leith
I like the bars in Leith. I like the port in Leith and I like the people of Leith. And when I say people, I mean women. Petite ones wrapped in long scarves that partially conceal dimples. Angular ones with legs as long as the Walk. Gothic ones with dahlia lips and shoulder ink.
Leith: I like your girls. It’s just a shame your girls don’t reciprocate.
Nobles is so toasty it feels like entering a warm vagina. A spacious warm vagina, for Nobles is veritably cavernous. High ceilings, wood panelling and gold trimmings create a sense of laidback grandeur – details that I know only from visiting Nobles’ website. Those things certainly weren’t in my notes from last night and I certainly don’t remember shit.
For the record, this is what my official notes read:
For the record, you can’t pay with bitcoin in Nobles. That would be cool (or at least it would if I had any bitcoin). We were just talking about bitcoin. And now I’m telling you a cool story about talking about bitcoin.
After sinking a couple of pints with my first drinking partner, we left the warm vaginal embrace of Nobles and I bade him farewell (i.e bumped fists and drawled “Laters fam”). Next part of the Leith community to be crudely likened to a part of the female anatomy is The Vintage, which by process of elimination must be the breasts. I was scheduled to meet Colin here at 8:30, but just before my notes took a two-hour hiatus, I wrote this:
No sooner had this observation been made than I turned and spotted Colin at the bar. He’d been sat there for the last 15 minutes, while I was sat at the table waiting for him to show up.
We felt like a right pair of tits.
I tried a couple of the chips Colin had ordered and they were damn good. Or maybe it just seemed that way because all I’d had for dinner was a pizza slice and a bar of chocolate. Plate envy must have been kicking in, as these are the last words I wrote from The Vintage:
On the basis of this article, it’s fair to say that will be a “No”.
The Port is just a good place to get smashed and talk pish. As the internet fairly described it, “Depending on what you want on a night out, [Port O’Leith is] either the best pub in Edinburgh, or one of the worst.”
Tonight, all is quiet in port, but you can tell from the scuffed tiles that this place has seen some action. Rammed to the rafters. Sweat dripping from the ceiling. Cunts dancing on the bar. Jaws going.
The Port O’Leith is the sort of place you’d go for a quiet pint and wind up pulling a Luke Harding. Wake up three days later in Calais with no memory and a couple of skinny hookers.
While we drank, Colin told me about Leith’s history and about his own, which joined with that of Leith several generations ago. Talking about Leith reminds me of a line from a Fringe review I wrote:
Naked Dictators was the show, and you’re welcome.
With its disco lights and faded kitsch, the Port O’Leith is reminiscent of the bar in Filth where Bladesey gets spiked and then loses his shit. The theme seems to be maritime meets retro, with a bit of everything else thrown in for good measure. Flags on the ceiling. Life rings. A floor lamp in the window and mannequins with scarves.
The Most Awesome Notes in the World Ever add:
Thanks notes. What would I do without you?
The Carriers Quarters
Next it’s on to The Carriers Quarters, ‘the oldest wee pub in Leith’. This pub isn’t just wee – it’s low. Lower than a snake’s belly low, if a snake’s belly were as high as a low ceiling. I like it though. I like it a lot – far more than you’d think from reading my shitty notes:
The final stop was Teuchters Landing. I know this because the name’s in the photograph I took of it last night. Teuchters used to serve as the waiting room for the steamer that took passengers from Leith to Aberdeen. Now it’s a bar where writers from Aberdeen can get steaming.
I could expend a few lines describing Teuchters’ appetising breakfast menu, but you’d know that I was just reading it off another of my memory retention devices:
On a cold November night, Teuchters Landing warmed the soul. (Actually, that was the whisky technically.) On a warm August evening, Teuchters would be the damage. Or as The World’s Most Incredible Notes Part V put it:
And that is is how you turn a bunch of spaghetti into a semi-coherent review.
Hangovers are for pussies
“Were you really drunk last night?” asked Ravi as I was finishing this article. “I just went into your room and it reeks of alcohol.”