Wednesday, 15 July 2009

The Gathering

One lunchtime this week we went to the park round the corner from work for a game of touch rugby. But what was this? Fences and big tents! What's going on?

Apparently it is an event called The Gathering. "How long will the tents be up?" we enquired. "Three weeks" came the reply. Three weeks! For a couple of days of pipe bands! I hope it is worth it.

I suppose it will be, and I am just annoyed at missing out on lunchtime sport. There's more than just pipe bands. It would be good to see Alistair Moffat speaking, and the Battlefield Band are scheduled to play. They've written one of my favourite tunes - The Roving Dies Hard. What man, however happily settled, does not feel a stirring for distant horizons on hearing this song?

I'm Calum McLean, I'm a trapper to trade
And it's forty long years since I saw Tobermory
Through Canada's forests I've carried my blade
And its pine trees could tell you my story
Now my wandering days they are over
But I'm thankful to still be alive
For I've many's the kinsman who died in the hulks
At the end of the bold forty-five
I've an Indian lass now, I'll never deceive her
But there's nights when I'd up with my gun and I'd leave her
For the land where the bear and the fox and the beaver are lord
For the rovin' dies hard


It's the descendants of the likes of Calum McLean that the Homecoming events are designed for. I won't be at the gathering, but enjoy it if you go.

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