BookNook: Elephants and Bagels

BookNook is a weekly feature in which Fiona Grew shares her favourite spots around Edinburgh to enjoy a good read.

Does anyone else have the Week 10 blues? I’m not sure if that is even a thing but I’ve got them.

I’ve had one of those weeks where you feel like you are constantly screaming on the inside because nothing goes to plan. No work gets done; relatives fall ill; boys break up with you/awkwardly distance themselves from you; friends irritate you; and, again, no work gets done.

I baked a cake on Wednesday evening just to avoid wallowing in self-pity until it was an acceptable time to go to bed.

As such, I got to thinking about the ultimate student comfort food for Edinburgh students. There are Teviot’s Nachos, Brew Lab’s Carrot Cake, The Mosque Kitchen for something more substantial or a comforting dose of soup from Union of Genius.

However, as far as I am concerned, there is one place that is the ultimate treat around campus. Well-loved by students – i.e. always rammed at lunchtime – there is nothing more comforting to me than a calorie-laden, exquisitely yummy lunch from Elephants and Bagels.

I lived in Pollock Halls in first year and, before we all cottoned-on to taking food from breakfast to tide us until our 5.30pm dinner, I used to go to E&B several times a week. In hindsight a frivolous, expensive and unhealthy tradition, at the time our Fresher’s friendship group spent hours (whole afternoons, often) talking nonsense at the round tables. Somehow, there seemed to be so much less work to do back then!

Now that I am in my third year, I occasionally treat myself to lunch with a friend there and I am pretty sure that the staff recognise me still from my frequent first year visits. So today, I think I’ll go to E&B, grab a bagel (Bacon and Cream Cheese on ‘Everything’, if you’re interested) and sit in the window reading something totally unrelated to my courses. Hopefully, it will serve to improve my week.

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