10 years in Scotland



Have your cake
Originally uploaded by smohundro

Ten years ago today I started work at Collins Dictionaries. I had arrived the day before and had found temporary accommodation in a bedsit overlooking the river Kelvin, very close to Kelvinbridge subway station. I only stayed there for a few weeks until I found a flat for rent overlooking the river Clyde (which was far too dear and far too cumbersome to get to work from, but that’s the kind of error you easily make when you’re new to a place).

Work at Collins was quite good fun, but the social life there wasn’t great – it took several months before we went to the pub for the first time. Fortunately I got lots of visits from Denmark during my first year.

Relatively soon after starting at Collins, I started sharing an office with one of the French lexicographers, Phyllis Gautier, née Buchanan, who several years later would become my wife and the mother of my children, so today is definitely a day to celebrate!

(At Collins, I replaced a programmer called Stewart Russell who was emigrating to Canada, so if he had stayed in Scotland, Anna and Amaia would never have been born. Thanks, Stewart!)