Hopefully right about now I’m taking off from Edinburgh Airport bound for Belfast, although this evening I will be sleeping in my bed in Bathgate again. Yes today is the first day of the big move.

Though as Andrew Reeves has had in his highlighted posts on his blog since I made the announcement last weekend is it “A sad day for Scottish Lib Dems and Scottish Blogging”?

It is somewhat strange to be heading back. I’ve spent over 17 years including the last nine years and four months firmly ensconced in West Lothian. I’m a fully paid up NIPPLE* yet I’m heading back.

I don’t feel like I really belong in Northern Ireland so much anymore, I’ve only spent 5 years since my A’levels actually living there. What is more strange is that the room that I will be setting up to work from home in was the room that I sat in to revise for those same A’levels 22 years ago. I will however, be sleeping in the room next door. So yeah I’ll not be able to ad hoc pop into Clifton Terrace to hand in my various forms, ballot papers, or to rescue Kieran Leach for a drink.

Yes there is family and friends to catch up with both from before and through the joys of the internet ones I didn’t even know 9 years ago. There are some good friends like Caron, Andrew and many others who I’ve got to know over the past nine years who will be a gapping hole, as I suspect I may be for them, over the time I’ll be away. Also there are several (tens of) thousand leaflets that probably had my name on for delivery in the 2011 Holyrood campaign. Plus a few thousand doors that I’ll not be knocking on. So in a sense Andrew is right for the Scottish Lib Dems.

My blogging may well take on a different focus being away from the Scottish political buzz day in day out. Actually getting to see BBC Northern Ireland’s Hearts and Minds on a Thursday night rather than Sunday morning will seem strange again, but may well act as a catalyst.

Two things my blogging will still be is liberal and eclectic. It will still focus largely on politics both nationally, locally and undoubtedly also on Scottish matters (hard to totally take me totally out of that pond). There will be my usual diversions unto other subject matter whenever I feel like it too. One thing that somebody has commented on since the General Election was over and again once I was no longer contesting Edinburgh Central or the Lothian List was that there has been a little more freedom in my posting again. There maybe isn’t that fear of stepping too far off party message for fear of voters (or more likely the press) reaction.

So we shall see. I think I’ve over the last 12 months had a pretty strong year of blogging, obviously the General Election and subsequently seeking selection meant the volume at time petered off. There has been some hard hitting posts where I haven’t spared the punches aimed in all sorts of directions. I’ll keep them coming don’t worry.

Although having said that blogging will be light I have a few things scheduled.

* Northern Irish Professional Person Living Elsewhere.

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