Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Kirckaldy- My New Home

In my dreams I always used to see a tiny town endowed with immense lush greenery where life crawls at a leisurely pace. Indeed, my dream of living at such a dreamy place fulfilled when I joined my husband in Kirkcaldy, a incredibly beautiful seaside town, located in the Fife region of Scotland. Born and brought in the chaotic city of New Delhi where noise is the part of our life, Kirkcaldy seemed like a meditation centre to me. For more than 5 days or so, I was struggling with getting acclimatised to the chilly weather and the deafening silence. The winding roads are lined with old 16th century stone houses,which are synonymous to Scotland. However,new housing developments are popping up across the town.Unlike Delhi, cars perfectly parked at the either side of the road is really an amazing sight for me to see. The warm and welcoming Scots will never let you feel like an outsider. Their fresh and gentle smile will make your day.

Located on the east coast of Scotland, Kirkcaldy is the largest settlement between the cities of Edinburgh and Dundee. The town is well connected to all major cities and towns with a regular train and buses services. Kirkcaldy derives its name from the Pictish word Caer and Caled which perhaps mean as “ place of Caled Fort”. One of the major attractions is the long esplanade, which runs along the coast, and perfect for admiring breathtaking sunrise and sunset views. The biggest annual Link Market of Kirkcaldy is also held here, which is claimed to be Europe's longest street fair. As you approach the heart of the town you will see the splendid building of Kirkcaldy Museum and Art Gallery, which is one of the finest museums in Scotland. It houses an amazing collection of beautiful paintings by the Scottish painters and some other rare object that speak about the town's rich past. Facing the library are the well manicured gardens which are real feast to eyes. Opposite to the Library is the Adam Smith theatre, which was opened to commemorate the famous economist Adam Smith, one of the famous residents of Kirkcaldy. This theatre is home to the annual Fife Festival of Music and Fife Opera,as well as Kirkcaldy Amateur Dramatic Society. Scotland's third largest college, the Adam Smith College has three campuses in the town.

The prime shopping and eating area in Kirkcaldy is the High Street which runs parallel to the Esplanade, with the middle section pedestrianised. You will find all popular stores and showroom here like Marks & Spenser, Debenhams, Boots, Dorothy Perkins and much more. Besides, the street has a plethora of wonderful restaurants where not only can you savour authentic Scottish food but many popular Italian, French, Thai, Chinese, Turkish, and, Indian delicacies. Vibrant pubs and bars are also sprinkled in and around the High Street. The Mercat Shopping centre is a large complex that runs between the High Street and the Esplanade and houses an array of shops, cafes and restaurants. Postings is another shopping complex that has the main post office of the town and provides an entrance to TESCO.

Just a stone's throw away from High Street is the lovely Beveridge park, which is very well maintained and is an ideal place for spending time with your family and basking under the sun. The park has a amazing landscape and contains formal gardens and playground for kids. There is a small lake, which is home to dozens of ducks and other birds. I even spotted a pair of swans that add to the beauty of this serene lake. Located on the outskirts of the town is the ruined Ravenscraig Castle, which dates from around 1460. Recognised as a heritage building, it is a brilliant example of artillery defence in Scotland. From the top of the castle, you can admire the astounding views of the sea and the town.

I have fallen in love with this quaint town and its people. Time seems to be still here just like the emerald blue waters of the sea, which are so calm and peaceful. For hours I can stand along the esplanade and watch the waves smoothly kissing the sands, the ships cruising far away while enjoying the laid back atmosphere.