Thursday’s in Edinburgh is late night shopping, which means, apart from the shops opening till late, so does the National Gallery of Scotland. In an apperatif to my last supper in this city I took a trip there. The main rooms are an ecletic mix of (as the room steward said) “top-notch artists” – you know the Rembrandts, Constables, Monets and Van Goffs of the world – in no particular order. I couldn’t really get in these rooms – I couldn’t find a focus for my visit.

Downstairs however … now downstairs, this was another a story. Devoted to Scottish painters there were some truly amazing paintings down here, everyone telling a story. The print-room too, was full of etchings and dry-point pictures with the emphasis on light and shade of Scotland scenes. I could have spent longer down here, but they closed at seven, and my table was waiting for me.

Tonight’s gastromonique experience was to be had back on Cockburn Street, within the shadow of the Fleshmarket Close and the Royal Mile, in Viva Mexico. Suffering a little from a case of eyes bigger than my stomach, I’m not sure if I should have that desert, but hell, it’s my last night? One has to celebrate…! A Good meal. They were all good meals. Actually I’m thinking of a new section to this website – shepeatsTM: a listings of recommended eateries in european cities

Current wordcount: 39,293

Bjäkk looks up from his desk piled in papers, files and books, and out through the dark-stained window at the sun lowering over the mountain opposite. He refers to some papers, checks some figures and scrawls down a line of notes in black biro. He refers to some papers, checks some figures and scrawls don a line of notes from a chewed, black biro. He leaf through more pages, tapping the end of the biro tap-tap on the pad. He thinks of something, and looks up above his shoulder at the packed shelves, scanning along them, finding a file which he pulls out.

A couple of other sheets of thick paper fall down in front of him. He sighs and slings them aside onto one of the already precarious piles.

As he turns back to open the file in front of him something about the paper catches his eye. He reaches out again and pulls it down, studying the message written on its reverse. Slowly a smile draws across his face. He turns it over, a photograph of Hanna Katla’s smiling face looking sweetly back at him.

After a few moments just looking at the photograph he twists in his seat and slips it into the inside pocket of his leather jacket.