'When I first started telling people that Aiden and I would be moving to Aberdeen the most encouraging response I got was from our Swedish philosopher friend who informed me that I would love living in Aberdeen because being there felt like being inside a black and white picture.
Another man told me that if I wanted to know what Aberdeen was like I should go into a shower, paint it grey, turn the tap on cold and just stand there with my clothes on, "...That's Aberdeen" he said matter-of-factly.'
Aberdeen. We've been there once. We did not love it.
It didn't come as much of a surprise, no one who has grown up in Scotland expects to love Aberdeen. Very few people even expect to like Aberdeen. Aberdeen is grey, it's wet and it's full of people who work in the oil industry. Who are universally acknowledged to have no souls. My oldest friend, Dancing Girl, calls it Aberdoom. We thought that was just her being Dancing Girl (she lives in the West End. Once when she was looking for a new flat I suggested she try the looking south of the river, she laughed at me. I WAS BEING SERIOUS) and we went to Aberdeen with an open mind. We rented a sweet flat over looking the docks, we went to a nice wedding where there was even a rabbit and then we went to the cinema to see the worst film ever made, and then we left. As fast as we could. It's not just that Aberdeen is grey, it's GREY. Seriously, add saturation to Lauren's (gorgeous) photos of it and the only thing that would change would be the colour of the cars. And it smells funny. And perhaps this was just the fact that we were in town on a Friday night, but it felt kind of menacinng. There was tension in the air. The kind of tension you get when boatloads of over-paid young men who have been at sea for four months in a big metal container with hundreds of other over-paid young men are poured out into the streets and allowed into bars to spend all of that (over)pay before they climb back into their container and head out to sea again.
And yet. Lauren is starting to like it. So maybe it's not all bad? Google tells me that 171 people came here from Aberdeen last month, I dunno but maybe some of you tell me what there is to love about Aberdeen?
*photos by Lauren McGlynn. A Texan in Aberdeen (really.)