I’ve been thinking a lot of about Scotland lately. As I learn about scotch and whisky, I began to fall in love with my whisky teacher, “Ralfy”, who is cute as a button, and has a lovely accent that makes me melt. He calls his fans ‘Malt Mates’ or “Malt muffins”. An I would be first in line to buy him a drink.
Most of what I know about Scotland is either cliche or from an English point of view. I love history, so I set out to learn more about the country.
I am watching a BBC history course on Scotland, which is taught by another handsome fellow with another lovely Scots accent. Mr. Neil Oliver is doing a very good job sorting out myth from fact. I am up to the 14th century in the course. Edward I was about as welcome as General Sherman in Atlanta. And his wussy son Edward II isn’t going to be much better.
Goodness gracious Scotland was a violent place! When the Scots weren’t fighting the English, they were fighting each other. It was all very nasty, but it makes for a thumping good tale.
Speaking of cliche, Mr. Oliver hasn’t yet mentioned bagpipes and I am curious to know when they arrive and ‘why’. I find them piercing; they get on my nerves. Bagpipes are a love/hate object in Edinburgh. The tourists expect some but even the locals confess they can only bear to hear so much at a time. I had a friend who was a passionate piper. Before he died, Robert went to Scotland to play his pipes “in all the right places”. Whenever he did so he was mobbed by Japanese tourists who were looking for just this.
So far as I know, I don’t have any Scot blood (worse luck). All the same I would like to see this place someday, if only to tour the castles and a few distilleries.
And I wouldn’t say ‘nay’ to meeting a Scotsman or two – with or without a kilt.