Robert in Lockdown – 22.4.21

Seonaidh MacIntyre celebrating his 30th up Ben Vane proudly holding aloft his South Uist flag.

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Two things happened in the last week which made me feel slightly older.

First of all, my good pal Seonaidh Macintyre from South Uist celebrated his 30th birthday by climbing a Munro.

In his younger day, he would just have been returning home from a night out in the West End of Glasgow at the same time he headed off for Ben Vane last weekend but it would appear he is a changed man. I wouldn’t like to suggest whether he was up the hill or ‘over the hill’, but I will say I am glad I have a few years to go yet before I’m turning 30 and making wild decisions like climbing hills at the weekend!

As you can see by the picture, Seonaidh is a patriotic chap and never goes anywhere without his South Uist flag.

The other thing that made me think twice about how quickly time appears to be passing was the 190th anniversary of Glasgow University’s Ossianic Society which took place last week.

This, it occurred to me, means I’ve been in Glasgow for over 10 years because I remember having a great night at the 180th anniversary when I was in first year at Glasgow Uni. The Ossianic Society (or Comunn Oiseanach) is Glasgow University’s Gaelic society and is the second oldest student association on the campus. Its aim is to raise awareness of the Gaelic language and culture throughout the uni and, certainly in the 10 years I have known it, it has done an incredible job.

As well as spreading the word about the vibrancy of Gaelic in the city, it is also a great way for young Highlanders or Islanders with an interest in Gaelic to make pals whilst starting out at uni. I certainly made a lot of great friends in the Comunn Oiseanach in my first year – most of whom I am still in touch with today.

I hope it survives for many years to come and will celebrate its 200th anniversary in 10 years time, which will be quite a remarkable achievement.

In other news, away from Glasgow, Joy Dunlop again hosts the latest virtual Taynuilt Ceilidh at 7.30pm this Saturday, April 24, featuring Ali Maclean, Catherine Tinney, James Graham, Ainsley Hamill and Alastair Paterson, Rachel Hair and Adam Rhodes, and Hector McFadyen on the box.

Head over to The Taynuilt Ceilidhs Facebook page to check it out. It is sure to be a cracking night and has the added excitement, for me at least, of being the last Saturday night before the beer gardens reopen!

I would ask you all to pray to the weather gods for a spell of sunshine (at least over Partick and Finnieston) next week so that I can maybe get a sun tan whilst sitting outside for some food and refreshments; and so that the ever maturing Seonaidh Macintyre can get a clear view at the top of whatever Munro he might be climbing instead of coming to the pub!