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Thread: Hello

  1. #1

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    Hello

    Hi, I've just join electric Scotland, it looks like an enjoyable community here. I'm an American of Scottish origins. I've done the genealogy back to about 1690 on my paternal Scottish line including DNA testing. My part of the family is from Appin, Scotland. The family story is that all the brothers and sisters left (all adults by then) and went to the US in 1790 to avoid serving in the British Army which was then looking for Highland "volunteers."

    I've been back to Scotland twice now. Most recently this past May/June. We traveled to Islay, Oban, Stirling, Pitlochry and Edinburgh. Along the way we had a grand lunch hosted by our clan Chief. We're planning a return trip for next year.
    Creag an Tuirc!

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  3. #2

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    Re: Hello

    Welcome to our wee community. You might consider waiting until 2014 as that is another "Year of Homecoming" and also an International Clan Gathering which will be based around Stirling. They are also opening the new Bannockburn center and celebrating 700th anniversary of William Wallace.

    Last time I was in Oban I ordered Haggis for my lunch which came with peas and chips! I said what happened to the turnip and mashed potatoes? Ah they said... it's the tourists you know.

    Alastair

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  5. #3

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    Re: Hello

    Thanks for the welcome Alistair! We want to bring the boys over before they leave the nest, but I could well imagine going back in 2014 as well. Luckily for me, my wife loves Scotland as much as I do.

    I think we focused on seafood in Oban. We did have haggis for breakfast of course. We desperately miss it. It's illegal in the US you know. Sheep lights being unfit for human consumption (an entire nation eating it daily notwithstanding!) We had wonderful versions of haggis in Islay, Sterling, Pilochry and Edinburgh. No two presentations alike and none with peas! Yikes! I don't even get that. Although missing haggis so much I'd happily eat it with macaroni and cheese and not say a word about it! It gets even worse too, next weekend is the Virginia Scottish Games, I'll be helping to convene for Clan MacLaren. Whilst there will be cabers tossed and hammers thrown, fiddles and pipes played alas there will be no haggis presented or eaten.
    Creag an Tuirc!

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  7. #4

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    Re: Hello

    You might check out Caledonian Kitchen http://www.caledoniankitchen.com/ as they make haggis in the US and you can order it online. I was actually involved in the taste test and I can recommend them. Their first effort was terrible but I do enjoy their current offering and they do a few different varients of it. They did enter a haggis tasting competition in Scotland and took third place. Not bad for a US company against Scottish competition!

    I actually enjoy black pudding more than haggis... an excellent addition to my bacon and eggs!

    Alastair

  8. #5

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    Re: Hello

    Thanks Alistair, I'll give it a try. We tried the Scottish Gourmet faux haggis for Burns Night. Definitely not haggis. I saw your haggis report from these folks, I'll give the lamb one a go. We've found a local source for black pudding and even tried our hand a wee fry up a couple of weeks back. Turned out pretty well. We found smoked back bacon at the same place as the black pudding. We have a shop up the road called The British Pantry run by a Scottish lass and her English husband. It's near Middleburg in the midst of horse country so I'm sure it's catering to wealthy Brits in need of a little taste of home.
    Creag an Tuirc!

  9. #6

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    Re: Hello

    Hello, and welcome From Falkirk (UK)

    My paternal ancestors came from the Balquhidder area, and I note the following link, also gives 'you' a connection with the area lol

    http://www.walkhighlands.co.uk/lochl...an-tuirc.shtml

    Regards

    Ranald

  10. #7

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    Re: Hello

    Thanks for the link And the welcome Ranald. We went through Falkirk a couple of months ago on the train from Edinburgh to Glasgow for the flight out, but you probably missed us :) i'm a member of walkhighlands, I joined in preparation for the trip. Next trip we'll get more walking in. The last one we were trying to get too many things done in too short a time to walk much. One exception is Creag an Tuirc. We had a wonder lunch with Chief Donald MacLaren of MacLaren and his lovely wife Maida. After a wee dram of cask strength MacLaren whisky, made the climb up to Creag an Tuirc just me, my wife and thousands of wee midgies...lol. The lads down below had headnets on, but I didn't get bit on the face, it was mostly under the kilt they got me
    Creag an Tuirc!

  11. #8

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    Re: Hello

    Here is another link (very long), with many photos of the srea. Are these photos yours?

    https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=cr...w=1006&bih=487

    THE MIDGE
    by Angus Macintyre
    Courtesy of Famedram Publishers

    I ken, we midgie, you’re no’ blest,
    You’ve been to me an awful pest,
    Yet still there’s pity in my breast,
    To hear them cry;
    They’ll pin a medal tae his chest,
    Who mak’s ye die.

    It surely is a serious matter,
    That, on the folks wh’are “Doon the Watter”,
    Yer wee bit carcase grows the fatter
    In stinging jags,
    That mak’ them want tae run an’ batter
    Their heids on crags

    Yer life is short an’ fu’ o’ fun,
    A midge’s race is swiftly run;
    Ye only come in summer sun
    Tae gi’ve us pain;
    When dreary winter’s snow has come,
    We’re left alane.

    The Tax inspector’s worse than you,
    He’s biting folks the whole year through,
    Till whiles they don’t ken whit tae do,
    Tae jink his flail;
    An’ if their “poverty’s” no’ true,
    They’re put in jail

    .......and no, the author is not a relative !

    Ranald
    Last edited by Ranald; 27th August 2012 at 08:01. Reason: added a line

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  13. #9

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    Re: Hello

    I can walk through a cloud of midgies and they don't bother me but send an Australian mozzie and it bites me like crazy

    Elda

  14. #10

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    Re: Hello

    Maida MacLaren told an entertaining story of a visit to Nova Scotia and the large Mosquitos she encountered there. She said with midge we have a deal, if we stay in the sun, the midge will stay in shade and we won't get bit. However, in Nova Scotia she tried this with the resident biting pests and they had never heard of this odd treaty. And further, they wouldn't respect it when told of it!
    Creag an Tuirc!

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