amw (amw) wrote,

I can still hear the pipes.

I was just sitting outside having a cigarette after cleaning the house when i heard the sound of bagpipes carried over from the rugby stadium in the wind. Scotland is playing today, and i often forget that's where my family came from. My mother's side goes back to Malta and the Netherlands, but my father's has primarily Scottish roots, with splashes of Jamaican drama.

From what i gather, my mother and father met because they were both involved in Scottish country dancing at university. My father married in a kilt of our family's tartan. They started dancing again just before the divorce, and my sister and i went along to dance aswell. I don't have my kilt any more, not that it would fit 15 years later...

We only lived in Scotland for a year - i think it was 1987. I remember house music and computer games and grim Glaswegian weather and black pudding and Ben Nevis and Loch Lomond. I remember an audio book i had of Scottish ghost stories; my sister had another one with more traditional folk stories. "Look at the mouldy hand, m'lord, the mouldy meatless hand, m'lord!" A spooky, quavering voice i'll never forget.

We visited St Andrews, where my parents met. It's a beautiful university town by the sea with the original golf course and one of those awesome Scottish graveyards. What a place for a kid to play, amongst the tombstones and tenements of the ruined cathedral... I wonder whatever happened to the photos my parents took.

I should think about that more often, about where i came from. And one day i should go back to visit...
Tags: looking back

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