Ellon Probus Club held a pre-birthday salute to Scotland’s greatest bard, philosopher and man of many parts, Robbie Burns on Jaunary 23, writes Jim Gauld.
The tribute was led by president David Barclay and club member Alan Cameron, accompanied on keyboard by Alison Young and in the wind section by the lusty Charles Reid.
Alan himself is a man of many parts, ex-teacher, ex-head-master, ex-councillor, linguist, local historian and, from his latest performance in addressing the haggis, now a contender for an Oscar at the 2014 acting awards.
However, the same cannot be said for the club members who accompanied the artistic trio in their renditions of some of Burns’ famous songs.
The fairness, humanity and romanticism shown in Burns’ writings have made him the only poet to be honoured and revered annually in every corner of the globe.
A Burns Supper is the number one ‘Must Attend’ function at the myriad of St Andrews Societies created by migrant Scots as they spread out across the world and vividly portrays that you can take Scottish culture out of Scotland but you cannot take Scottish culture out of a Scotsman.
Burns himself was a well educated, well-travelled man even visiting Ellon on occasion.
He was a socialite and highly-thought of in social circles but he never forgot his roots. His outlook to life is demonstrated in his poem ‘A Man’s a Man for a’ that’, in particular the last line “That Man tae Man, the world o’er, shall brothers be for a’ that”.
This sentiment is a basic principle of all Probus Clubs. Interestingly the EU national anthem, adopted from a poem by Schiller (1785), also celebrates the ‘brotherhood and unity of all mankind’ - is there a connection?. Duncan Milne gave the vote of thanks.
The next meeting is on February 13 when Stuart Wale will talk on ‘Peru - A Potato Man’s Paradise’.