Scotland – Friday Fictioneers

Friday Fictioneers is hosted by the wonderful Rochelle, the undisputed master of what I call Sound Bite Fiction.
She sets the weekly challenge, the standard, and the prompt photo.
The idea, as always, is to write a story of around 100 words based on this picture, below, which this week is supplied by
Dale Rogerson.
I blame her puddles for my story.

© Dale Rogerson

Click here to hear the writer read his words:

Scotland

What is Scotland really like?
I get asked this often.
And I tell of the mountains, the heather and the haggis.
Of fast-running rivers, leaping with salmon.
Of our lochs, long and grey, with mist above and monsters below.
Of half-ruined castles, containing legends and ghosts.
Of battlefields, drenched in tears and glory.
Of the spirits who still walk them.
Of the River Forth, spanned by three bridges and three centuries.
Of bagpipes and kilts.
Of Robert Burns.
And the people, the Scots?
That is easier to answer.
Our National Animal is the Unicorn.
And our National Flower, the Thistle.

About ceayr

A Scot who has discovered Paradise in a small town he calls Medville on the Côte d'Azur, C.E. Ayr has spent a large part of his life in the West of Scotland and a large part elsewhere. His first job was selling programmes at his local football club and he has since tried 73 other career paths, the longest being in IT, with varying degrees of success. He is somewhat nomadic, fairly irresponsible and, according to his darling daughter, a bit random.
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69 Responses to Scotland – Friday Fictioneers

  1. Pingback: Scotland – Friday Fictioneers — Sound Bite Fiction – Truth Troubles

  2. You summed this up wonderfully.
    I so want to visit, but then again….

    Like

  3. Nobbinmaug says:

    You pulled me in with the mountains, rivers, lochs, and castles. Pushed me away with the battlefields, bagpipes, and kilts. Had me wondering if Scotland’s a real place with the Unicorns. I’ve seen it on maps, but I’ve also seen Tolkien maps. Thistles? That made me scrunch up my face in curiosity and confusion.

    Like

    • ceayr says:

      It isn’t Disneyland, it is an ancient land with a violent, romantic history.
      Everything I wrote is the truth, so perhaps it is just a little too real for your taste?

      Like

      • Nobbinmaug says:

        I’m pretty sure Disneyland’s national animal is a mouse. So, how does a unicorn become a country’s national animal and thistle the national flower?

        Like

        • ceayr says:

          I think it is well recorded (see next week’s blog!) that when the evil sorcerers of Guamnibbon, in jealous rage, set forth to exterminate the wondrous unicorn, this magical creature found sanctuary in the Highlands of Scotland, and survived the initial harsh winter by eating the indestructible thistle.

          Liked by 1 person

  4. 4963andypop says:

    Coincidentally Amazon prime and netflix have had quite a bit of Scottish themed stuff that I have enjoyed. Probably just plain old tv for you but the views were stunning. Im a glutton for shows like Outlander, Haimish MacBeth, shetland…looks like a lovely place with an turbulent history. Great finish on this one.

    Like

  5. This is again one where your audio reigned supreme.

    Like

  6. If asked what my first thought of Scotland is, I would probably reply rain!

    Like

  7. pennygadd51 says:

    The murders! You didn’t mention the murders! Or the body snatchers!
    But seriously, a nice piece, CE, and I liked the way you summed up the Scots with an imaginary animal and a tough and prickly weed.

    Like

  8. draliman says:

    You should be working for VisitScotland! Many a happy holiday I’ve spent up there 🙂

    Like

  9. A lovely piece, C.E. My dad’s grandfather on his father’s side used to tell him he came from England which he did but dad always suspected there was Scottish ancestry there. I recently found the last name belongs to a Scottish clan. I even found the kilt for that clan. A computer can fill in a lot of blanks. I’m one of those Americans of very mixed ancestry. It’s even more mixed for my children as their father was from India. 🙂 — Suzanne

    Like

  10. Dale says:

    This was a love letter to your home and beautifully done. A place I hope to visit in the near future. Matter of fact, a distant cousin just contacted me telling me they had information on my father’s father – a Highlander – I still don’t have all the info but can’t wait to find out.

    Like

  11. You drew a beautiful picture portrait of Scotland. Had me intrigued, Ceayr.

    Like

  12. msjadeli says:

    Rugged is the word coming to mind as I read your descriptions. Scotland doesn’t sound like a place for wimps.

    Like

    • ceayr says:

      True, although our thinkers, among whom the best known are possibly David Hume and Adam Smith, led the way in the Enlightenment of the 17th and 18th centuries, causing no less a figure than Voltaire, the great French writer/philosopher, to say “We look to Scotland for all our ideas of civilisation”.

      Liked by 2 people

  13. Sweet and nostalgic with just a bit of thorn 🙂

    Like

  14. The burr really makes a difference.

    Like

  15. trishsplace says:

    A lot of love in that piece.

    Like

  16. M K Zebra says:

    To my absolute shame I have only been to Scotland once, to climb Ben Nevis. Bloody beautiful, really want to go back, hopefully will in the next few years.

    You should write for the tourism board.

    Like

  17. Iain Kelly says:

    Yeah, well, some of it. On the other hand have you visited the Calton or Craigmiller estates? My view of Scotland lies somewhere in between the romantic idyll and the urban reality!

    Like

  18. granonine says:

    You’ve set a rather dreamy, but realistic as well, atmosphere. Someday I’m going to see Scotland.

    Like

  19. Sandra says:

    Such an atmospheric piece, redolent of all that I remember about Scotland. Lovely. You didn’t mention the rain though.

    Like

  20. Reena Saxena says:

    A intriguing introduction … when you say Unicorn and Thistle. Excellent take!

    Like

  21. Rowena says:

    Hi CE,
    As someone with Scottish blood somewhere in the mix, I loved reading this. It’s been hard for me to get my head around what my Scottish origins mean and what it was like when they were there. How they lived. One of them lived in Robbie Burns territory and I have no doubt they would’ve crossed paths, which blew me away. That ancestor came from Sorn.
    Best wishes,
    Rowena

    Like

    • ceayr says:

      Thanks, Rowena, glad you enjoyed.
      I was in Ayrshire (Burns Country) in August, didn’t see any of your folks around!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Rowena says:

        They were in hiding. Our ancestor was a John Paton who is appears was from the landed gentry and I’m not sure what prompted him to pursue a life of crime. I only know that he was expected to know better.
        It was quite intriguing for me to find out that the mother of Burns’s first child was an Elizabeth Paton. I haven’t found a connection, but the other interesting coincidence was that John Paton’s mother was a Muir and Burns wrote a poem A Epitaph to William Muir”. Not sure if we’re related to him either. However, at the very least these characters were living alongside my people and it provides incredible insights into their community, especially for me as an Australian living by the beach on distant shores.
        Best wishes,
        Rowena

        Like

  22. Frewie says:

    Oh my heart, the pipes are calling me 🥰💕

    Like

    • ceayr says:

      Good to see you here, Frewie.
      I’ve been watching Frankie Boyle’s Hurt Like You’ve Never Been Loved:
      Priceless!
      But not for the faint-hearted, folks, a multiple-X rating of foul language and dubious topics.
      Do NOT watch if you have any sensibilities whatsoever.

      Like

  23. bearmkwa says:

    ❤ A beautiful view of Scotland!

    Like

  24. I would love if instead of button like there is a button ❤ .

    Like

  25. You summed it up absolutely perfectly. For me, haggis yes, bagpipes NO!

    Like

  26. Dear C.E.

    A lovely picture you paint. I can hear the bagpipes calling whilst the unicorns leap over rainbows.

    Shalom,

    Rochelle

    Like

  27. neilmacdon says:

    All very Walter Scott until the last imaginary and spikey images. Lovely ending

    Like

  28. Tannille says:

    Sign me up. A great promotion piece!

    Like

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