It’s 10:30pm and I’m sitting in my garden soaking in the last of the day’s warmth. I wanted to write something really wistful and whimsical, because sitting here is making me feel quite lovely. That perfume of garden flora, a soft flutter of leathery wings, clouds lit up in shades of lavender and rose; the calm of a summer~ night brings gifts for all the senses so it does.
Even for my wee blackened heart I do find summer to be really quite grand, admittedly, and it saddens me that so far we’ve had very little of it here. I had high expectations of the summer sun at the weekend when I sauntered out the door for the Meadows festival in a short and billowy dress but the weather gods had other plans for my floaty outfit. Oops!
I’m looking forward to the coming days of sunshine, hopefully I’ll get to enjoy the outdoors with some actual warmth and without any more perverse gusts of wind! BD won some meat in a competition of some sort recently so he’s been itching for a good ol’ BBQ in the park. I’ve also recently acquired an obsession for gardening and filling my little space out-back with a mixture of poisonous and edible delights so I’ll be bringing the seasoning to the party should our Scottish Summer™ actually permit such a thing.
I’m afraid that whilst the last few weeks have been a bit manic for me, I’ve been unable to really stop for a second and soak it all in, so I’m sorely lacking in anything to do with anything right now. I’ll try harder, I promise. Until such a time please accept my measly offering of a handful of crappy pictures from my recent (non) adventures as penance.
It’s been a bit of a hectic time recently, I spent last weekend mostly drunk and the weekend before I was in Cambridge for some familial festivities. I’m also spending this weekend in London to celebrate my birthday.
So without further ado here are a handful of pictures from Cambridge.
Cambridge Uni Building
Cambridge Uni Statue
This weekend, London and the Alexander McQueen Savage Beauty exhibition!
I feel the need to explain such a long absence from here. I’ve not really been able to find the words to articulate the loss I’ve been feeling in these past few months. I still can’t find the words, really, so this will be fairly short.
I hadn’t spoken to Higgy for a couple of years until October, I don’t even remember exactly how we had managed to fall out of touch for so long, or back into touch at the time. Sometimes life just gets in the way I guess and it’s easy to forget a constant. But – for some reason – we fell back in touch, we exchanged a couple of messages on Facebook idly catching up as old friends do and then he hit me with the news they had found a mass in his chest, his cancer might be back and he was going for an open biopsy in the coming days. On the 7th November he was told it was a recurrence of Osteosarcoma, a rare type of bone cancer Higgy had fought before when he was 18. The date sticks with me as I also witnessed a fatal car crash that day. I seldom truly believe in bad omens or curses but there has been a dark cloud hanging above my head since that day and I’m afraid it’s yet to be lifted. I managed to visit him only once in the hospital during this time, I’m glad that when I saw him he was still smiling and cracking jokes, quoting episodes of Archer and making light of a bad situation in true Higgy-style. It’s a memory I try and hold on to because it was the last time I would ever see his smile, I wish I had known that then. Sadly after that his health declined sharply and on the 28th December, around 11:40am, my dearest friend lost his second battle with cancer at only 29 years old. He was laid to rest on the 5th January, the only recollections I have of funeral are the concrete floor of the chapel and a few blurs of old and familiar faces of our many mutual friends.
I was 14 when I first met Higgy, he was 15. We were both wearing Nine Inch Nails t-shirts and when we clocked each other in the graveyard that was frequented by our group of miscreant friends, we made a beeline for each other and promptly started arguing over who was the biggest fan, and that became the basis of our friendship over the next 14 years. We fought and bickered constantly – not over our differences, but our similarities. The NIN debate went on for nearly 3 years! (I couldn’t possibly say how it was resolved on a public platform but Higgy definitely won that particular debate.) Most of the time our tiffs had that sense of sibling camaraderie, an air of tongue-in-cheek mixed with a strong desire to really wind the other up. On occasion we fought bitterly; but we always came back to each other in friendship, laughed off our squabbles and moved straight into the next one.
Since he left there has been a huge void inside of me. His absence cuts like a knife. His name still comes up on my phone and I find it hard to swallow that he is not on the other end of the line anymore. I pass places which invoke a memory, usually something small and insignificant like buying a ridiculous amount of cake or fighting over a video-game spotted in a shop window that neither of us were even planning on bothering to play. Whilst they are memories of such inconsequential moments the pain they bring is unbearable and I find myself often overwhelmed by the knowledge that I will no longer be able to share those little moments with him.
Higgy, I miss you like hell. You were a part of me, soul-bound, and you took that part of me away with you on your departure. You were one of my truest friends and one of my worst enemies. I thank you for all the memories you’ve given me, even if they hurt now. I thank you for your unique humour. I thank you for gracing me with such a bond of friendship that only you were able to give.
Missing you always, budd-ay.
Christopher “Higgy” Higginson
11th September 1985 – 28th December 2014
I would like to thank Higgy’s father, Hugh Anderson, for capturing so many wonderful memories of Higgy and for allowing me to share some of them here. Hugh is a professional photographer and runs Venture Photography in Michigan, USA.
Oh, hey! So there is this new “gallery” thingamiebob popping up on the dashboard and I figured it would be a good way to showcase some pictures I snapped in Greyfriars Kirkyard. I know I’m not the best of photographers, I’m still very much learning the ropes of this new technological gizmo of mine.
I despair! These poor sable-hued creatures have suffered such terrible reputations over the years. As if being considered a bad omen isn’t enough, now they have to contend with being unstylish! I won’t even get into the outrage over the carelessness of shunning an animal based on their looks, instead I would prefer to set the record straight and celebrate my trés chic and stunningly handsome feline companion, Edgar Mistoffeelees von Fluffybum.
Behold his regal countenance! Capable of both great ferocity and the fluffiest of tendernesses; he is a lover of Dreamies, a fighter of string and the destroyer of carpets throughout the household. His thrones are many, his subjects loyal to a fault; he spreads carnage amongst his sworn enemies, The Moths and The Slippers, and he only eats the jelly in his wet food.