I couldn’t believe that people in Scotland have a whole day devoted to a poet and that they actually do celebrate it. But, then, every reason to celebrate is good, especially if the night is an opportunity to renew national tradition.
If I were Scottish, I really wouldn’t mind putting a bit more effort into my mid-week (Burns’ Night is on Tuesday this year!) dinner, and preparing haggis, neeps and tatties instead of a quick pasta. Fortunately, my Edinburgher friend has decided to take responsibility, and cook for a bunch of us international people. I am sure it will be a bit complicated to explain to some of them what haggis is made of, so it is probably better to start the supper with the Ode To A Haggis. I am really looking forward to the Tuesday supper, but I still don’t know what the attitude towards tradition is here.
Once I was asked, “Do people eat haggis because it’s traditional, or is it traditional because they actually eat it?” I must say, as long as the customs are enjoyable in themselves, I don’t need to know if they are political or invented! When intcomes to the case of Burns’ Night, I feel it will be something special.
So, if you don’t have any plans for this Tuesday night, you could always book a table in a restaurant. Almost all the city venues (including Italian, Indian and Malaysian) organise Burns’ Night celebrations of one kind or another! For something extra-special, you could go for a Stand-up comedy show (with whisky and a haggis dinner) or to the Brunton Theatre to see a contemporary play about the traditional Bard. For those who watch their weight, The Edinburgh Reporter recommends the Burns’ Ceilidh at the Lot or…you could try a vegetarian haggis!
And remember that we have already told you about the Burns App which you can download to your Iphone, so you need not memorise all the poems…..
Ith gu leòir!*
*Gael. – Eat plenty!