Friday, 25 January 2008

Burns Night

I thought I should mark today, which is an important date in the Scottish Calendar. On or about 25 January Scots get together to celebrate the birth of the great Ayrshire poet Robert Burns. Traditionally haggis, neeps and tatties are eaten and the haggis may be piped (bagpipes) into the room. Burns wrote a poem "Ode tae the Haggis" to celebrate this humble food which had developed out of necessity to provide something sustaining where people had very little. Neeps refers to turnips which I think are traditionally mashed and tatties are potatoes. Despite my Scottish roots I have never tasted haggis. I am partial to the other tradition which accompanies haggis, a wee dram! The only trouble is, my preferred wee dram is of Irish origin! (Irish Whiskey, Tullamore Dew).

I See Her in the Dewy Flowers
I see her in the dewy flowers,

I see her sweet and fair;

I hear her in the tunefu' birds, I hear her charm the air:

There's not the bonnie flower that springs

By fountain, shaw, or green,

There's not a bonnie bird that sings,

But minds me o' my Jean

Robert Burns

You've seen this painting before but I hate posts without a pic and this is the only Scottish image I've got on the computer!


Lesley said...

Enjoy your wee dram - we're rather partial to a well aged single Islay Malt in this house. We spent our honeymoon in Scotland, ate haggis and tested lots of malts in front of a roaring log fire.

I came home pregnant with the Sausage Monster!!! It must be the fine Scottish air ;)

Lesley x

fiona d said...

I'm reading this as the neeps and haggis cook! It will be Islay malt for us as well. Happy Burns Night :-)

Susan D said...

I first tried Haggis on of all places the Channel Island of Jersey. I managed to buy some a few years ago in a local supermarket but they didn't have any this year.

sharon young said...

Hi Julie
Before i became a vegie I tried Haggis too and surprised myself by enjoying it so much that we had it regularly for a time.
I have distant Scottish connections as does my OH, his are a bit closer, his GD was a Scot and his Dad was in the Black Watch, nice to read the poem , I've never read it before.
I haven't seen this painting before, it's lovely, very evocative, and a beautiful composition.

artisbliss said...

I live in a small Kansas town by the name of McPherson--guess what ancestry we celebrate?! I have had haggis, prepared by my former sweetheart who had the last name Frazier, who was and is very proud of his heritage. My grandmother's family were Glendenings, a sept of Clan Douglas.

My favorite Robert Burns poem is "A Red, Red Rose", probably because I love the old song that sets that poem to music. A music group, Tullamore, who come from nearby Kansas City, have recorded that song. It is here
if you want to listen. Scroll down to #9 and click on the sound icon. I hope it works for you, because they do a beautiful job.

Gina said...

We're off to friends tonight for a Burns supper so Stewart will be in kilt and there will be haggis (which I don't eat!) and plenty of different malts to sample - don't you love these traditions!

Gina xxx

DeeMom said...

Neat Post

got to love traditions for sure

The Wittering Rainbow said...

I really like the painting, it's gorgeous. I love the limited palette and the way the ochre colour resonates through from the foreground into the background. Thanks for reminding me about Australia day too - there's folk I need to speak to!