A lunchtime ‘scam’ in the Highland capital

Just when you think you are on top of your little world, along comes something to cause you to think what’s it all about. Such was the case last week when on a business trip to the North of Scotland, I found myself with enough time for a walk round the centre of Inverness.

And very pleasant it was too, in near Spring-like conditions being enjoyed by the citizens, no doubt rejoicing in the Highland capital now having the status of a city. Well done them.

Anyway all was well in my little world, made all the better by pleasant nods and conversations before catching a train to Thurso. But before I knew what was happening I was accosted by a young woman, demanding money to help her catch a bus home.

Taken totally aback, I lamely asked her where she was going, to be told Edinburgh before she rushed off clutching the few coins I had in my hand for the purchase of a newspaper.

I felt such a fool, wondering why I had capitulated so easily, failing to challenge her and her real motives for begging. Was she really a damsel in distress, or was she just proving to her chums that she could fleece vulnerable old people like myself? I will never know, though I suspect she was from the latter category, well dressed, reasonably articulate and not wearing a coat.

A lunch-time scam in which I was easy prey? I’ll know better next time.

On an entirely different tack, I wonder just how long our national rugby team will continue to sing “Flower of Scotland” before games, as far from inspiring them it seems to have the exact opposite effect. Is it not therefore time we confined this dirge to the history book?

It is after all not only an appalling, wretched effort, dreamed up by Roy Williamson late of the Corries folk group, but it is also anti-English, and surely never meant to be sung when we entertain the Welsh, the Irish and all the rest of the rugby nations who grace Murrayfield.

At a time when the team is enduring its worst spell of form since the run of form from 1951 to 1955 during which it never won a game, it might just be appropriate to change to a more upbeat song, designed to gee the lads up before a game.

The players make my case for change, feebly mouthing the words, if indeed they do that before going off like lambs to the slaughter as was the case against England two weeks ago.

I have no immediate replacement, though “Scotland the Brave” has a stirring ring to it that might just do the trick for our beleaguered team who are clearly suffering a crisis of confidence.

Roy Williamson was in fact an old friend from the mid 1960’s who would I am sure have seen the need to move on, and would had he still been alive, happy to have written another more stirring effort, more in keeping with the 21st century.