Every Saturday night I walk to work, usually alone.
This time of year I’m wrapped up in my coat, scarf and gloves, and most times my friend calls me and I chat to her as I hurry through the leaves and across the bridge and past groups of loud, laughing people, arms and legs bare, already rosy with drink by the time I start work. Grassmarket is full of people milling around outside the warm pubs, shouting at each other playfully and running up the road to get to the next bar, passing the eager rickshaw drivers and club promoters.
Other nights are quieter. On a Sunday night the streets are almost deserted and tending to the bar has more to do with cleaning than with serving drinks. People huddle in booths, deep in conversation. The one ‘o’clock rush consists of twenty people.
No matter how busy the night cleaning still needs to be done. Ears ringing, we sweep, wipe, spray, mop and scrub until the place sparkles.