P&J Column 19.10.17

EU’re all going on a Tattie Holiday

 Cosmo Ludovik Fawkes Hunt, 13th Earl of Kinmuck.

And so the Europeans are bleating that we don’t want to pay the divorce bill, and this Brexit farrago totters along with the rapidity, poise and purposefulness of uncle Neville after his 3rd bottle of claret. If we carry on like this, then the country will find itself doing what has, since that fateful Christmas day in 2001, been known among the family as ‘doing a Neville’. I don’t know how a country can actually contrive to be found face down in a rhododendron with its trews around its ankles and its dress shirt stained a shade of puce not previously known to human imagining, but if anyone can do it, May’s mob can. The Remoaners complain we have no bargaining chips but really, how hard can it be? We’ll get no-where by pussy-footing around with dinner in Brussels.

Get Junker to come here for negotiations over mince and skirlie at Ye May Gang Far and Fare Waur, and then we’ll see who has the upper hand!

In the meantime, I have been speaking to some of the farm labourers employed at the tattie howking this week. (I don’t normally communicate directly with help, preferring to speak through an intermediary or ‘gangmaster’, but on this occasion I’d driven the Land Rover into them and didn’t want to drive off without giving them a friendly warning not to report the matter).

Well unpick my stitches and sew me up again, these tattie pickers were not, as I had expected, of the traditional sullen child variety, but rather comprised a selection of strapping, efficient fellows, many of them highly educated, of Eastern European extraction. I was, of course, about to run them off my land, until I saw what a marvellous job they were doing. It seems that the youth of today are inexplicably unenthusiastic about being paid a pittance for backbreaking labour, even in the charming rustic idyll of a Northeast field in the middle of October, and so instead the work is now being done by Johnny Foreigner – Latvians, Lithuanians and Estonians, in the main. It seems that the price of restoring Britain’s will be potatoes lie rotting, unlifted in their fields. If you then wonder – “Who used to howk these tatties?” the answer is, like so many of the promises made about Brexit, a lot of Baltics.

View From The Midden – rural affairs with MTv (Meikle Wartle Television) presenter Jock Alexander

It’s been an adumbrated week in the village. Folk in the seething metropolis o’ Aiberdeen were astonished by the sepia coloured gloom that engulfed the city at aroond half three on Monday, a good couple of oors earlier than usual. Some said it wiz the End of Days. Indeed, mony young folk facetwitted that it felt lik a zombie apocalypse, fan brain-dead creatures roam aboot in an orgy of destruction. Those who’ve walked doon Union Street around 2am on a Seterday nicht replied “so fit’s new?”  Well, according tae weather experts, it wiz a’ tae dae wi’ Hurricane Ophelia, mixed wi’ dust fae the Sahara desert and particles fae bush fires in Portugal. So quite the maist exotic intercontinental weather we’ve hid for a while.  We here in Meiklewartle did notice the atmospheric conditions, but we’re weel used tae apocalyptic skies. Michty, fan the wind blaws in fae the sewage works and mixes the fumes fae Feel Moira’s burger van wi’ Skittery Wullie’s piggery, it aye looks like ‘at. Cheerio!

Kevin Cash, moneysaving expert & king of the grips

I seen in the news the ither day that the plight of the crew of the Malaviya Seven is still ga’an on. The peer lads on board hiv a’ been stuck here for mair than a year as the ship’s owners, Gol Offshore, owe them the half a million quid in back wages. Last wik the vessel wis due to be selt aff at auction, which should of finally raised enough siller tae get them hame, but the auction wis cried aff fan there wis the one bid, fit wisnae near enough. Noo, I’d love tae help them oot, and I likes a bargain as much as the next man, but I dinna hae pooches big enough tae buy an offshore supply vessel, even at a knock doon price. The thing is, it’s right in the city-centre, his stunning views of the harbour, and it’s got Wi-Fi and heaps o’ beds (well, Radar and hammocks, but it’s the same difference). They shouldna be trying tae sell it tae a shipping company; they should be listing it on Airbnb!