Scotland has shown itself to be incredibly notable through the evolution of media. While not nearly as metropolitan as London, Scotland and Edinburgh’s status comes not from its size, but from its sense of honor. Everywhere I went, there was a great degree of pride in not only the Scottish heritage, but the future possibilities as well. The blue flag and red dragon were plastered on a variety of buildings; symbols of their presence of in the minds of the Scottish people. Likewise, there was a good degree of honor in British history; being that it is part of the United Kingdom’s empire. I found myself comparing Scotland to Ireland, where they heavily considered themselves to be separate from Britain. The rolling mountains and lush green country are memorable and familiar offering for fantastic filming locations for media, such as the hit TV show Outlander. The old course at St. Andrew’s right on the cold waters offers esteem in the form the golf. The properness of Scotland is matched with its appreciation of the proletariat; the common man is welcome and well received.
I recall at BBC in Glasgow asking about what kind of programming people liked to watch. Was it different from the rest of the U.K.? What made it unique and entirely Scottish in nature? The answer came down to the people. Scots like to see other Scots who give off a real appearance. The most popular programming revolves around the kinds of people you could find in Scottish villages, or in the streets of Edinburgh. A show about two old pensioners proved to be one of the most popular shows on BBC in Scotland. The people relish in the things that make themselves Scottish, whether it be the local pub culture or the adherence to tartan. The culture exudes confidence, which in turn transfers over into their media.
The Edinburgh Film Festival exudes that confidence, allowing for the voices of the people to reach a wider audience of international viewership. The festival itself attracts a huge number of creators as well as watchers. It is a festival very fitting for Edinburgh, rich in history and confident in the future of film. You could tell that those in charge had a genuine interest and appreciation for the work of others. I even passed on of the premiers in the street one night. The crowd inside mingled with champagne; a collective of film lovers, brought under the northern sun of Scotland.
Music also has a heavy place among the people of Edinburgh. They engage in live music, playing hit songs, traditional ballads, and plenty of original content. The best night clubs were the ones where a band was playing late into the night. I noticed that a few of the bands incorporated a diverse number of individuals on instruments; under the range of sex, race, and age. The music communicated union through jams, pushing for entertainment and bonding. The memories the music creates is what creates the music. These memories transfer over to all forms of media. The perception gained through exposure allows for learning to take over. That learning, in turn, allows for communication and new ideas to flourish.
Edinburgh, especially, is a city that is filled with history that it uses to its advantage. Every major city advertises through media its own historical value. The reason to come and visit, take pictures, and tell your loved ones to visit too. Edinburgh isn’t a very big city, but it is remarkably old. Its buildings showcase this; they feature Victorian era styles with the influence of British and Norwegian concepts. I stopped into a pub called, The World’s End, which referred to the old city walls being the end of the world. The castle is one of the more notable figures when it comes to old values being implanted into a city succeeding in being old and new.
One of Scotland’s biggest symbols is its tartan pattern; most notable for being of the infamous kilts. I saw a fair number of people around restaurants and streets in the said kilts, but largely it was more of an uncommon occurrence. Still, it is not something to take likely. It is everywhere, even if not worn by every man as pop culture would lead you to believe. Ads, TV shows, and books all feature the bagpipes and kilt complete. Our trip to the royal family’s own kilt makers allowed for us to bring fashion into the sense of Scottish culture. Family and heritage come into play by allowing for the ancient concept of clans to create threads that are unique. The colors do, in fact, matter. This is unlike almost anything back in the States, I would be lying if my mind didn’t wander to The Simpsons character, Groundskeeper Willie; who is often adorned in a kilt. Almost any Scottish character I can think of in American culture, is wearing the famous tartan.
Scotland was the perfect end to the trip. Not as hectic and hot as London, allowing for us to spread our luggage out, but not have to worry about another massive city. Edinburgh was immensely easy to manage after the trials of London. Not only that, but I could feel a deep connection to the lands of Scotland; where my ancestral clans lived under the names of Paterson and Campbell. I of course, looked up both of their tartan patters. Media is subjective in its effect. In Scotland, it succeeds through honesty. There is no way to fake anything in the country. I will forever remember the experiences I have lived through. They reminded me of my status of living. To fully gain the most, you must do the most. I feel I could jump back over here at any time.