A train journey to the land of colors and contrasts begins at Edinburgh Central Station. Past the world-famous Edinburgh Castle, this blue, shimmer leads north, above the tongue-twisted firth of Forth, 50 meters high, above the bright red Fourth Bridge.
The first part of the journey by train through Scotland begins in the colorful, early capital of Edinburgh. It travels through the rolling hills of the Scottish Terai to the wooded, picturesque east coast around Aberdeen.
An encounter with the very unique, angular inhabitants of the region awaits. Along with people like the only Scottish sword-eater Steve Archibald, who tries to earn money for a holiday with his son at the “Fringe”, the world’s biggest street artist festival in Edinburgh. Steve used to work in a factory, but today he risks his life every day if he beats a 30-cm-long steel blade down his throat. Howard Nicholsby has just thrown a stone from the famous “Royal Mile” at the top of his shop Castle Hill. Howard is a mixed bag – and a famous one at that. He lives a new life in the Scottish national emblem – and the tailor kiln. Not the typical plaid cheap skirts that tourists make, but unusual models: their collection includes kilns made of cotton, cannabis, plastic, and jeans. Unusual, modern and very successful. Lenny Kravitz, Robbie Williams and actor Vin Diesel wore their plays. He says, “I haven’t taken off my pants for 17 years.”
Traditionally Scottish: Golf and Gin
Howard takes the train north to his father Geoffrey. He learned the trade in his kilt workshop. But he not only has an attraction for the kilns, an even bigger project: the family bought a ruined palace 30 years ago. “The reconstruction of the palace has also become a dream of mine.” This may take a few more years, carefully.
If you look out of the window at the train, you not only see picturesque rays and dramatic landscapes, but also golf courses again and again. There are over 550 of them in the country and Scotland is the birthplace of golf. 20-year-old Ellie Douchery shakes the very male-dominated national sport here. She wants to become a professional athlete. He inherited a passion for it from his grandfather. He was a professional himself and has been at home on Scottish greens for over 70 years. Today she is Ellie’s biggest fan.
Further to the east, at the end of the Fourth of Forth, is the quiet village of St. Monons, a small fishing village with a beautiful fishing. The longest serving coast guard in Scotland lives here. And it should be the only person who does not own a lifeboat. But Coast Guard Anne – agile, in her mid-70s and as calm and apathetic as anyone who has been washed away by all the coastal waters – smiles the problem aside. “If someone is in trouble, we call the Coastguard in Aberdeen and they send a rescue ship.” She sits in front of the lighthouse with a cup of tea and enjoys the view on the rocky, rugged coastline.
Aberdeen Fresh Fish
At the train station in Perth, Callum Richardson waits for the east coast at his train home. Callum’s small but legendary fish and chip shop “The Bay” in Stonehaven is considered one of the best in Britain. It means something, because “fish and chips” is a British national dish. Accordingly, the line in front of his small shop is sometimes longer than 100 meters. Callum receives fish by hand from the dynasty of the Kupper family of Aberdeen, where they are now removing fish in the third generation. Jamie Cooper is in his mid-30s and now runs a business in the Tory district of Aberdeen. Now 40 years old, her father Danny Rose stands in a huge fish auction hall in Peterhead at 5:30 in the morning, 50 kilometers further north, buying goods at auction. At 8 he had already spent 9,000 euros on fresh catches – but in a good mood: “It’s fun! And today I made some good deals!” The first part of a train journey through the heart of Scotland ends in the “Silver City”, as in Aberdeen, constructed almost entirely of silver-gray granite.
In this documentary Camera Work (Camera: Sebastian Wagner) was awarded the Columbus Film Award.
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