scribbles tagged ‘Scotland’

magic kilt

Saturday, November 17th, 2012 | tags: , , , , , ,  |

Walking along a crowded platform on Paddington station, suddenly an arm wrapped around a shoulder and a Scottish accent welcomed me. My friend had seen my Royal Stewart tartan through the crowds and recognised my gait. How lovely that the kilt could help bring us together in this otherwise unfriendly milieu.

Later, standing on a tube train, a stranger smiled at me and invited me to take an empty seat they had rights to by proximity. This has never happened before during my London commutes. Later again, a young man invited me to pass in front of him to leave the train rather than taking my natural place in the rambling crush.

I love all 9 yards of my kilt, it helps people see me.

It inspires kindness from strangers.

It’s magic.

magic kilt
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girded up

Monday, May 28th, 2012 | tags: , , ,  |

Kilted guestsI wasn’t the only person in a kilt at the wedding. This father and son couple were wearing their official kilts. The father, a military instructor at Sandhurst, said of his son:

He hasn’t fully got the hang of it yet, he wouldn’t be able to step over a barbedwire fence and I have to make him wear underwear

Later, the boy’s kilt was on back to front – it must have worked it’s way around – but he didn’t notice. Very cute.

You can just see the ‘sgian dhub‘, Gaelic for “black knife,”  an ornamental sock knife poking out of the top of the fathers sock. It’s a polite gesture to your host to put it in the sock where it can be seen – rather than hidden to enable a suprise attack

He told a delightful story of how the bagpipe’s were banned as an ‘instrument of war’ because they instilled fear in the opposition. Alas, I could find no evidence to support this claim online. This is what wikipedia says:

King George II attempted to assimilate the Highlands into Great Britain by weakening Gaelic culture and the Scottish clan system,though claims that the Act of Proscription 1746 banned the Highland bagpipes are not substantiated by the text itself. It was soon realised that Highlanders made excellent troops and a number of regiments were raised from the Highlands over the second half of the eighteenth century.


girded up
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