St Andrews Day

Happy St Andrews Day, everyone!

Sharpe familyOf course the town was going to celebrate Scotland’s patron saint! The Royal Golf Club was open to the public today, but I didn’t go, not being an avid golfer myself. The castle was open for free, but I got there just as it closed (the website lied!).  However, Felicity & I got there just as Jesse, Casey, and the boys did, so we waited for Katharine to come out of the castle and made our way to Market Street for the festival. There were spinning teacups (no geese, alas) and jugglers and people handing out flags. The Christmas lights the town has been putting teacupsup the last two weeks were switched on at 5:00 PM. Then we all went over to Church Square on South Street, passing Jim and Jonah on our way, joined up with Louis, and watched the piping band march back and forth. The crowd was very well behaved and didn’t crowd the band. Across the way we saw Biggles and some other people we knew. Ah, living in a small town!

We then followed the pipers to Madras College, where they lit the torches, and from there we all marched to the castle. I kept hoping somewhere along the way someone would read aloud the Life of St Andrew, but no one did. The hagiographer in me was disappointed. You will just have to read it here.

I got some video, here tis:

The piping band marching back and forth… Across the street is the Town Hall, which you can tell because there’s a spotlight shining on St Andrew. Our friend Stuart was one of the pipers.

And storming marching to the castle. Bagpipes + fire = Much fun, despite it being below freezing and I couldn’t feel my toes. Now, back to work!


While we did get Thursday off this past week, it wasn’t for Thanksgiving, but for MLitt graduations. So I read, and spent the day hunting down ingredients for fudge pecan pie and waldorf salad. Chris and his friend Andrew (who is American) had a Thanksgiving dinner that night, but only Andrew, Felicity and I were Americans, so it didn’t really feel Thanksgivingy. However, a few weeks ago Jesse invited the Renaissance and Medievalists to his house for Thanksgiving today. Some other people came too, so there was a fair few of us. We had Americans, Canadians, English, Japanese, and Chinese represented. Jesse said before the meal that we are all expats in Scotland, and so we are all family. We had a huge meal that we all contributed to and then whiled away the hours over wine and coffee, talking about music, history, movies. We even got Scott to sing an aria in Italian for us (an opera singer turned English PhD). Jesse’s son, Morley (age 3), took to me and we had fun playing “save me!” with Rachel… a game consisting of me trapping him and Rachel having to take him away. All in all, it was very enjoyable… I’m glad I went, and very glad Jesse & Casey decided to host Thanksgiving for a group of people they don’t know very well. Hooray for them!

I just looked at my calendar and realized that this week is going to be something close to the gates of hell, so, I would greatly appreciate happy thoughts and prayers on my behalf. Four classes on Monday; two classes on Tuesday, plus rehearsal (the last one before our concert); doctor’s appointment* and singing in Evensong on Wednesday; class on Thursday. Meanwhile, also researching and hopefully soon writing my research paper due in two weeks.

* The doctor’s appointment is in another town, so I have to figure out the buses to get there in time, and then find the hospital, be admitted into the system, etc. Please pray that will go smoothly, and that they will also have my medication on hand because I’m out of it and this week is my next dose, so…

Casey posted about Thanksgiving on her blog here, with pictures!