Mellis's, Cheesemonger.

It has become part of the tradition of The Christmas period in Edinburgh to visit Mellis's cheese shop in Morningside to purchase some expensive but very fine cheese. We usually buy the Gorgonzola, which looks rather like an oozy meringue, and tastes gorgeous as well as one or two other cheeses. This time it was a smoked Lancashire. We got way with a reasonable outlay but many were spending upwards of £40.

When we first arrived at the shop people were queuing outside on the pavement and inside the queue snaked along the back of the shop then around to the front of the counter. We didn't want to wait in the cold outside so we repaired to the Blackwood Cafe across the road for an enjoyable scone and tea. By the time we'd finished there the queue had diminished by half and we were able to make our purchases. The assistant told us the shop had been open since 7.00 am and the queues been like that all day. Glad I'm not having to go tomorrow.

Storm Barbara roared and poured its way across Scotland and Edinburgh today. Was worse elsewhere in the country. I braved the elements for an exhilarating run to Threipmuir and Harlaw reservoirs up in the Pentlands, sometimes running to a standstill other times being bowled along. The storm's name had caused a little glee as we're staying with Susan's sister and family. Her name is Barbara.

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