And There They Were

Last month I managed to steal a weekend away to the Highlands. The weather was balmy for March, with summer feeling as though it had arrived early. Not a cloud in the sky, taps aff, etcetera. The trip seemed blessed by the sun itself, a well-timed getaway destined to be plenty of fun. The journeyContinue reading “And There They Were”

Book Club – How Late It Was, How Late

A comedy of errors without much to laugh about, 1994’s How Late It Was, How Late was a second-hand purchase of mine bought on a whim. It stuck out in the Scottish Literature section like a sore thumb as the title rang the bells of familiarity in my head. Counting out my loose change toContinue reading “Book Club – How Late It Was, How Late”

Pollokshields: Community in Action

The standout Scottish story to come from the previous few days’ newscycle was the amazing display of community from the Southside of Glasgow. Images of an immigration van boxed in by peaceful members of the community have stuck in my head and restored some faith in the power of people. At a time when itContinue reading “Pollokshields: Community in Action”

Back of a Cocktail Napkin Election Report

It’s a rare thing that a party in power for 14 years can increase its majority, but such is the situation in Scotland that the euphemistically named “constitutional question” continues to dominate. Even parties that complain about nationalists constantly banging on about independence seem to do extremely well when they also constantly bang on aboutContinue reading “Back of a Cocktail Napkin Election Report”

The Culture War Election

In some ways, the upcoming Holyrood election is lacking in the drama of an American election night or a nail-biting referendum. First Minister Nicola Sturgeon enjoys approval ratings far higher than any of her opponents. The SNP are almost certain to win the election with even the worst polls for her party giving them aContinue reading “The Culture War Election”

Beware the Beat of the Culture War Drums

With every passing week brings another bloody battle in the so-called Culture War that seems to have gripped Britain. In the red corner we have the lefties, supposedly baying for anarchy and hellbent on destroying our traditional way of life. In the blue, the Tories: their puffed-up outrage about such a threat on full displayContinue reading “Beware the Beat of the Culture War Drums”

A North Sea Love Lilt

There’s a curious Scottish myth about selkies, shapeshifting creatures who can transform from seals to humans with the shedding of their skin. It’s a story I can recall my mum reading to me when I was a child. I was, and still am, a bookworm; the type of person who will go happily to bedContinue reading “A North Sea Love Lilt”

Independence…eventually.

What happens when an unstoppable force meets an immovable object? Scottish independence is back in the news cycle again. It never really left, but every once in a while the issue flares up once more after another promising poll, Westminster cock-up and SNP landslide. Although it brings me no pleasure to write about, I feelContinue reading “Independence…eventually.”

Drug Death Prevention in Scotland

It is no secret to anyone that Scotland has a major addiction problem that has ruined countless lives. Alcohol, as well as both legal and illegal drugs, lie at the heart of an epidemic that has formed a visible crack in Scottish society. A recent announcement from Nicola Sturgeon has seen the creation of aContinue reading “Drug Death Prevention in Scotland”

Aberdeen: Post-COVID Homelessness

After months of isolation and varying lockdowns the recent news of a vaccine with almost 95% effective that could be rolled out relatively soon came as a welcome sign that things may just get better. Life has changed incalculably for billions of people all over the planet. The pandemic has undoubtably been the largest worldwideContinue reading “Aberdeen: Post-COVID Homelessness”