Wednesday, September 24, 2008

I dinna cain....

Among Scots, if they think they cannot do something, they say I dinna on the left side of the road, understand only the most articulate Scot, not like this place (Edinburgh,) remember to say 'aye' instead of saying ok or yeah.

We spent the day in the past. The old castle that sits atop an old volcano about 500 feet above the city overlooking the bay to the North Sea was our focus on our day off from work. They actually store the Royal Jewels there in a temperature controlled room behind glass that is inches thick. We saw how the Highlanders dressed for battle and detected a faint wisp of sarcasm when Brave Heart is the only reference you have to the Scottish past. They do not like Mel G, but tolerate his attempt because he made William Wallace come alive even if it was very inaccurate. And we saw the cannon fire at 1 p.m. to mark the time (Scots figure, why shoot the cannon at noon when it would take 12 shots? So they mark time at one.)

There are more pictures than you can count, and yes, I did a pint in a pub called Deacon Brady's that has been around since the 16th century. We work again tomorrow and the body is only beginning to recover from Monday and Tuesday. The four guys in the group are re-doing the main walkway entrance to the kirk (church). We ripped up three layers of blacktop and removed the aggregate that was there, backfilled and hired a whacker to smooth and compact the soil. We laid four courses of concrete slabs and are ready to complete the job tomorrow with five or six more courses. I have pictures of that too.

Our host family is most delightful and dedicated to the work of the kirk. I will tell more later, but it seems a bit odd to be talking about them, albeit favorably, on their Dell. We love them. I wish that I could be as open and accepting as they are to us if someone from a foreign country came to pay us a visit. But as one of our hosts said, "You guys work hard and you brought money to do the job, too." Yep, they appreciate what we are doing...all thirteen of us.

I dinna cain finih this right now...I am being paged by a Rotweiler (Elsa) who licks your face off if you do not attend to her (inbetween her telly watching, and I have pictures to prove that too.) Your response should be "Aye" in I feel your pain or wet face.

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