a life well lived

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Highland Mists 05/20/00

When I got up this morning, there was a light rain, more of a heavy mist than a drizzle.  The house  was quiet, Elsa having left at 7:00 a.m. for a craft lesson in Reading on beading bobby pins, barrettes and hair ties.   

Sitting at my big-armed chair with a cup of coffee and a raisin cinnamon roll, I went through the piles of letters that seem to spring up on, over and around the  coffee table.  Sifting my way through, I came across a flyer for the Fairhill  (MD) Highland Gathering, being played today.  

Looking out at the weather, it seemed to me perfect weather for Scottish Games.

Between Pete's Scottish bloodlines and my Welsh ancestry, a lot of Celtic corpuscles pump through my children's hearts.   

It was Mimmy who suggested going to our first highland gathering, the Delco Scottish Games held at the Devon Horse Show  Grounds.  That must have been over 25 years ago. I remember how stirring the massed bands were - and how baking hot it was under a blazing summer sun. 

On  the opposite end of the barometric scale, the three of us headed down several  times in early December to Alexandria VA's Scottish Walk, a long drive but well worth it.

One summer about 15 years ago, Elsa and I took in three (3) Scottish Games -  in Fairhill in May, in Alexandria in July (we even stayed overnight, but  that's another story), and in Pipersville (PA) in the fall.   

The Fairhill  Games are held on a large meadow;  the ones in Alexandria took place on a  high school campus, with the massed bands parading in the stadium;  the  Pipersville Games - the smallest by far of the lot - were held in a glen.   

The games in Pipersville were dearest to my heart.  I can still see & hear & feel  the pipers & drummers as they crested & came down the hill toward us at the bottom of the glen.  It was a  rare perfect moment.

Recently, it was delightful to see Lyt Patterson, Whitney's paternal  grandfather, at her wedding, fully kilted out in his clan's tartan and to  watch her walk up the aisle on Peter's arm as a bagpiper played several stanzas of "Highland Cathedral."

What is it about the swirl of bagpipe music and the swing of a kilt that  stirs my blood?   I hope this Ancient One gets to see another Highland  Gathering, to hear the thrill of bagpipes at least one more time.   

My  goodness, all these memories stirred from a misty, moisty morning.

My love to my dear laddies & lassies - Grammie Kay
(Mom got her wish – sort of.   Many many moons after she wrote this, a wonderful bagpiper roamed the church grounds as guests entered for her memorial celebration; the last piece of prelude music was the bagpiper & organist playing the entire Highland Cathedral in her home church,  an exquisite cathedral perched high on a hill, overlooking a lovely glen.  One last thrill of bagpipes for the Gramster.  elm)

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