It was 26th August 2016 that we got the keys to our little flat in Falkirk. We didn’t fully move in right away, we handed the keys for our old flat back on 11th September, having spent the weeks in between moving all of our stuff. Even once we had moved in the place didn’t feel like home right away, as we waited for beds, mattresses, sofas and tables to arrive. We spent the first two weeks sleeping on an air mattress and didn’t have a sofa until 5th November.
These days, the place really does feel like home. Everything has long since been unpacked and has settled into its proper place. Books are on shelves and pictures are on the walls. We’ve had friends and family stay in the spare room occasionally and we’ve made a fair bit of use of the garden and garage. I’ve even stashed a couple of bottles of wine in the cellar (don’t tell P, or they’ll never stay there).
Meanwhile, we’ve been getting to know the town fairly well. While our “local” is a bit scary looking, we’re regular enough visitors to Artisan Tap that the bar staff recognise us even when they see us outside the pub. We’ve found other bars, cafes and restaurants we love and we know what our go-to take aways are. We’ve visited the Falkirk Wheel a fair few times, as well as Callendar Park and have occasionally rented bikes to cycle along the canal to Linlithgow. I’ve even found a great hairdresser right on my doorstep. Somehow, we’ve never quite made it to The Kelpies, but it’s only a matter of time.
It’s worked out quite well, too. We originally moved away from Glasgow’s West End because P got a job in Edinburgh, and Falkirk was a good compromise location between the two cities. Now that I’m working in Edinburgh as well, we haven’t had to even think about moving again – I just catch the train going in the opposite direction to the one I used to catch. It’s likely to remain a convenient place to live for a long time to come.
Mostly, I just can’t believe how quickly the year has gone. Sure, there are things I miss – really there’s no place like Finnieston, and it’s a shame that being in Falkirk makes having friends over a little trickier, but either way, visits are far from impossible and I’ve been enjoying getting to know the place. No doubt I’ll get to know it even better in the years to come.