I have got to admit – this blog is a long time a’comin – but in my defense anthropology and print media have been my forte.
A-movin and a-shakin with the times I am beginning to condense my 19 journals and 28 years worth of ramblings (first 5yrs are deep) into something perhaps you guys might be interested in reading.
Come on, I’ve got some making up to do!
I embarked on my writing career when I was 16. Lets take a glace back….
Mellerstain House, The Scottish Borders, Scotland 13/02/2000
We are in the Scottish Borders, the Low Lands of Scotland. A place where men ride wild on horse back, guarding our Border from the English – a region where honor and pride is worn deep into the faces of husbands and a nation of lassies who’s hearts are embroidered on their sleeves.
My father sits perched on this throne, puffing the pipe. He’s been out shooting on the farm and is donned head-to-toe in tweed-esq hunting gear. Dismantling his riffle, he glances at me.
“ Wit dove yee wint lassie” (Scotts)
Translation: “ What would you care to say young lady” (Our dear Queens English, Q.E)
Standing in my P-jammies, picking away at a corner of the sitting-room wallpaper (which he does NOT appreciate – NTA)
“Fitter, I wanna leave Scotland ay. Gan chase the Bengal Tigers and stuff in India, wi my fella, he’s lush ay, like” (Scotts)
Translation: “ Father, one would love your permission to elope with my way too mature partner -of three months- and chase the Tigers in the age old commonwealth of India (Q.E)
Dad draws in on his pipe, takes off his cap,
“ Get ye’r heed oot the cloods bairn ‘n’ plint yer feet an the grood….ach wumin” (Scotts)
Translation: “ Please dear child be mindful of your emotions one must remain grounded when one is a lady. One should spend ones time doing embroidery and making lace” (Q.E)
Six months later – after being ‘cut off’ by my wonderful father.
– No seriously no sarcasm intended. He is wonderful, I am a stubborn idiot –
I found my-self slaving day-in-day-out in a chemist in my local town scraping enough coin together to embark on my first round the world expedition.
Boots the Chemist, Galashiels, Scottish Borders. 02/08/2000. 8.30am
Sipping (strip lighting/underpaid/mind numbing/nylon uniform) instant coffee.
On schedule 8.31am, my boss Janis remarks;
“ Are ee likin firward to yers holidays pal?” “Did ee witch EastEnders last nit ooohhh” (Scotts)
Translation: “Is one looking forward to ones hollie hols? Golly gosh EastEnders was quite entertaining last night, did you get a chance to glace at the box?” (Q.E)
Wow. I take a deep breath. Pace it out…p-a-c-e it out. Closing my eyes I repeat my mantra;
“I am going to see the world, I am going to get out of here”
I promise Janis;
“Och aye, I canny wait ay, I’l send ee sim pictures” (Scotts)
No translation needed. I never looked back nor sent her pictures.
New York, USA 03/06/2013
Thirteen years later
From working as a forensic anthropologist in North Korea to negotiating conflict, researching and translating with the UN in the Middle East, Cambodia, Thailand, Vietnam and Australia – I am still on the road.
I face the music.
I go home.
I hover in the door way, picking at the corner of my Da’s sitting room wallpaper.
I stop moving,
Look at this now old man, take a breath deep into my soul and say,
“Thank you” .