To the best of my recollections it was a
Wednesday morning, February
It was my turn to get out
of the van to make a bread delivery to the gatekeeper's
lodge in King's Park Edinburgh. It was windless
that morning, an hour or so short of Midday and blisteringly cold. The
gatekeepers’ wife hello’d me with a sad wee smile:
'Did ye ken
the King’s deed, Davie?'
'Lang live the Queen'.
That was it - the
end of one and the start of another. The changeover had little material or
emotional effect on us in the northern capital. These people after all
were only English. It was some years before my absorption of school
history lessons that had led us to believe that
not only were the English inferior but had little claim to being in charge
of our country.
Time slightly modified the first part,
and the second was simply rationalised into obscurity. No longer does the
sound of the pipes and roll of drums send an urge to draw the claymore
from the thatch and look to the south border.
Sixty-odd years and half a world away have
made a few changes.
We had entered Kings Park that morning and
having made another delivery of dodger at Jeanie Deans Cottage, we drove
from Queens Park. We now had a Queen and,
as it turned out, a good one and lang lived.
King George had stopped living in his sleep
from thrombosis. The youngish looking
bloke on our pennies seemed way too young to just stop like that.
But he did. A
time to celebrate his daughter’s ascension or to mourn simultaneously his
passing was something of a quandary. It
was all too deep for me to be greatly concerned with.
That Queens Park is quite a place; it is some
where around 650 acres in the middle of a relatively small city as
compared for example with Central Parks 843 acres in New York. Arthurs
Seat a dried out old volcano plug and Salisbury Crags
are its outstanding features. It carries three small lochs:
Dunsappie loch near the top of the
- St Margarets
at the bottom
lochs near to Samson's
Lex Gordon, New South Wales, Australia,
April 16, 2012