The observant among you may have noticed that the Mainelli’s spent two weeks of August in Scotland, followed by Wales, and sailing in England. We left in early August when polls for the Scottish Referendum predicted a 22 point “No” lead, and returned to England to hear about a predicted “Yes” lead. Suspicious? Go figure.
Of course, all I’ve learned about political diplomacy I’ve learned from Samuel Johnson, whose Scottish admirer and biographer, James Boswell, 9th Lord of Auchinleck, treasured and recorded such snippets as:
[Boswell:] “Mr. Johnson, I do indeed come from Scotland, but I cannot help it.”
[Johnson:] “That, Sir, I find, is what a very great many of your countrymen cannot help.”
[Johnson]: “In England we wouldn’t think of eating oats. We only feed them to Horses.”
[Boswell]: “Well, maybe that’s why in England you have better horses, and in Scotland we have better men.”
Feeling a bit sheepish about the fact that an entire nation seemed happy to never see our family again, I returned with my passport just before the referendum in order to save the nation. Taking a wild chance I sailed the Clyde, along the way buying my dear friend, Eric Smith, a new red duster as a boat-warming gift for his Colvic Watson 28, Serendipity. It also encouraged me. Without a successful exertion on my part, the ensign might have had a mere few days of validity, so it’s good for me that the vote was for union, otherwise I would have been a bit sodium-chloride angry (salt-ire, or is that “sailor rage” or “sea rage”…) if it had been money/currency-union wasted.
And a nice view of Arran Isle too!