Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Scots Corner - St.Andrews

Well I could go with the place since I was born there or I could go with the person who played a huge roll in the start of Christianity or I could go with St. Andrew's Day which was celebrated yesterday. Mmmmm.

Before I head into what I will highlight let me tell you a dumb story. When I moved across the pond to the US I had a lot to learn about the culture. Learning from books, while a start, really does not prepare you for every day life especially when that move is quick and unexpected.
St. Patrick's Day rolled around and there was lots of celebrations around the country, many were televised. I got excited because I thought that the same would happen on St.Andrew's Day. I was so disappointed when nought happened. Not only that, there was no local celebrations. I confess I sulked for a while but then came to the logical conclusion that it must be because the US celebrates Thanksgiving at about the same time. So what did I do yesterday? Tidied up the front and back living rooms and put up our Christmas trees which will take a few days to decorate.
So I've decided to go with the Saltire - if you are not familiar with the name it belongs to the flag of Scotland and is also the name of the style of cross Andrew was crucified on.
The Saltire is supposed to be one of the oldest continually in use national flags in the world.
Deep in the history of Scotland there was a battle ... there's always battles. About 832 A.D. the Picts and Scots were facing the Angles. Oengus (Angus) II decided to pray for help. On seeing a white saltire against an azure blue sky he decreed that if they won the battle then St. Andrew would become the patron saint of Scotland. They won and the flag was born. There's a number of other stories about how the flag was born but I happen to like this one :)
More info can be found here http://www.scotshistoryonline.co.uk/saltire/saltire.html
Yesterday was also the last day of celebrating Homecoming Scotland 2009. I gather there was lots of celebrations over the weekend and the Saltire was marched in style on Sunday from Athelstanford to Haddington. http://www.homecomingscotland2009.com/news/saltire-pictures.html

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