Sunday 30 November 2008

Happy St Andrews Day

Murrayfield on 08.03.08.

This is my country,
The land that begat me,
These windy spaces
Are surely my own.
And those who toil here
In the sweat of their faces
Are flesh of my flesh
And bone of my bone.

Sir Alexander Gray

I would like to wish you a very Happy St Andrew's day. I love the fact that American's celebrate their 4th July and Irish people love their St Patrick's day. We should do more to celebrate our days and I beleive that in Scotland Nov 30th is now a discretionary bank Holiday.

This is my 8th St Andrews day not spent in Scotland. When I lived there I didn't think about my cultural identity much if at all, if on holiday I was asked what nationality I was I would say I was British, now I would always say I'm Scottish. Billy Connolly once said that the further away from Scotland people got the more Scottish they became and that is definitely true of me, I am trying so hard to keep my connection to my homeland. My children have lived more of their life in England than Scotland and I am pleased that they still sound Scottish, even Beautiful Baby Daughter who was only 3 and 1/2 when we moved here, but they are also proud of their Mother Country and very much see themselves as Scots.

I am so proud to be from my country and even if given a choice would always and forever choose to be a Scot. My tiny little country with only 5 million people in it has given so much to the world, not just pleasurable stuff like whisky and golf but really important life saving stuff like penicillin, anaesthetics and antisepsis. We also invented the telephone and the television, tarmac. the bicycle, we invented radar, the steam engine, sociology and even the adhesive postage stamp, I could go on but you'd think I was just showing off and that is the cardinal sin if you're Scottish, we hate people who blow their own trumpet, understating and self deprecating is our favourite kind of humour.On the subject of humour, I couldn't possibly leave out the man who makes me howl with laughter and who I have had on my CSL for the last 25 years could I ?

So today, if you are lucky enough to be in God's Own Country, take a look around and be grateful that you are in the place I love the most. My connection is primitive and instinctive, it's a deep and profound love and my beloved Scotland is my heart, mo chridhe. The chorus of Scotland the Brave is

Land of the purple heather
Land of the shining river
Land of my heart forever
Scotland the Brave

Alba an Aigh


DAB said...

Happy St Andrews Day sweetie. I'll raise a glass of whiskey in your honour- it's mighty cold down here in the South a warm toddie or two is called for methinks :0 TFx

menopausaloldbag (MOB) said...

Aye Happy St Andy's day hen. I loved the Flower of Scotland singing away at Murrayfield. I too feel like you, I am a Scot through and through and very proud to be so.

Slangivar Hen!

DJ Kirkby said...

Billy Connoly is hilarious! I think it is a shame that the Enlish are not given St George's day as a bank holiday!

Tim Atkinson said...

I've never laughed as much (before or since) than at a Big Yin gig - it hurt! As far as I'm concerned the Scots can claim the world's funniest comedian. But sociology? I thought Emile Durkheim had something to do with that. Was he Scottish?

Squirmy Popple said...

We had our first snow of the year this morning, just in time for St Andrew's Day. Glasgow looks lovely today.

Anonymous said...

Cheers girl! I love your pride in your homeland!

FOXY1969 said...

I must admit after living in Scotland for 3 years, conceiving my first child there, and meeting fabulous people that remain in my heart forever. Scotland is a truly wonderful place.

Laura said...

Happy St Andrews day :O)

mannanan said...

Happy St Andrews Day......Scotland is indeed a beautiful place. My favourite place in the world happens to be Stein on the Isle of Skye.....heaven on earth.

Anonymous said...

Happy St Andrew's Day!! (Yes I know I'm a teensy bit late - I was rather busy yesterday ;o)
Your remark about Scots getting more patriotic the further away from Scotland they are made me laugh. We were just talking about that at work last week. I have very good friends who are now back in Glasgow but when they were down South they all but wore a kilt every day *in case* anyone didn;t realise they were Scots!
I LOVE Scotland and Billy is my hero!

Shirley said...

Mercy Maude, girl! I'm gone for five days and I come back to four (FOUR!) posts from you, a gazillion comments, and three videos! You've been busy!

I'm ashamed to say I didn't know about St. Andrew's Day -- had to look it up. Thanks for the mind expansion. xoxo

Nota Bene said...

Oh bugger...did I miss it? Ooops...yes happy St Andrews Day...I'll have a glass of scotch to celebrate a trifle belatedly... I have to add, that as an Englishman who doesn't give two hoots for his country, I struggle to grasp the loyalty that Scotland engenders in its absent children...but I do wish I felt the same about my country of birth

...and further, there was an episode of QI, where much time and merriment was had explaining that Scotland's list of inventions is not as long as it would claim - top of the list was the telephone, which (they claimed) was invented by a Frenchman or an Italian, but he couldn't afford to patent it! But it suits my motto - 'Never let the facts get in the way of a good story' and anyway, who trusts the BBC these days!!

Working Mum said...

Happy St Andrew's day to you! (A day late I know)

Hope you're feeling better and it doesn't last a fortnight like me.

Barry Teeth, Beet Poet said...

Enjoy your saint day, but the list of Scottish inventions is a fallacy, as pointed out by Nota Bene. For the record:

Scotland is named after the Scoti, who were Irish. Scots is actually a dialect of Irish. Kilts were also invented by the Irish though the word ‘kilt’ itself is Danish. The bagpipes were invented in Asia.

Haggis was invented in ancient Rome. Hogmanay is a French invention and a French word. Porridge was invented in ancient China. Whisky was invented in Italy.Clan tartans were invented by the English.

The telephone was invented by Antonio Meucci, an Italian-American, from whom Alexander Graham Bell outrageously stole the patent application and copied it.

The steam engine was invented in ancient Egypt by a Greek.

John Logie Baird was beaten to the invention of television by Philo T Farnsworth, an American.

Penicillin was known to the Bedouins of north Africa for thousands of years and the French got there well before Sir Alexander Fleming discovered it by accident.

Still, I hope you had a good hangover to mark the occasion.

auntiegwen said...

Tf - thank you me dear, it's baltic isn't it ?

Mob - I know darlin xx Slainte xx

DJ - that is a shame, we should all celebrate out special days

Tim - very true but I did read that Adam Ferguson when he was Professor of Moral Philosophy at Edinburgh Uni was the first person to study humankind in groups ?

Katie - I saw the photos, I love your photos of the dear green place

Lisa - it's a poor shadow of your American pride

Foxy - I'm glad you think so xx

Lolly - thanks for indulging me, I just miss it you see x

mammanan - thank you, some of our islands are truly breathtaking x

penelope - oh I feel a trip to the Mother country coming on, we would have an absolute blast x

Shirley - hope you had a good thanksgiving trip, I was a wee bit busy, I was poorly over the weekend so stayed in bed and blogged !

NB - truly loads of Scots who still live there feel very patriotic too, maybe it's bred into us ? I'm sure there are lots of inventions that people dispute the claim to !

WM - thank you pet, I think your illness caused you to become delirious and brave Tesco !!! and to bake your own cake !!!! with all the prep and marking !!!! you are delirious xx but lovely xx

barry - we all know we're Irish really but that suits us beautifully, if we can't be Scots what other nation could be better ? and I know everyone thinks we ripped the world off but we don't really care, we love being us x

GrandAnglais said...

Only been to SCOTLAND ONCE, Galashiels and Edinburgh, would love to go back again, Isle of Sky and the Highlands top of my list. Billy Connolly is a hero of mine, one of the world's funniest men.