Secret Scotland

If it's secret, and in Scotland…

Hogmanay traditions. Lost?

I came across a list of Hogmanay traditions as practised in Scotland, not much use to some as unsocial as me, but the notable factor was that they were given in a nostalgic list of things supposedly done “Your Granny’s Day”.

I never thought of that – just that everybody I used to do these things with was long gone.

So, in no particular order…


That chilly walk to be first across the door at someone’s house.

Being sneaked a wee drink

A bit of an anti-climax thank to a slightly Continental home, but it was still nice to get this treat.

Non-alcoholic gifts

Traditionally something like a lump of coal, or a bit of bun.

Obsessive house cleaning

It was considered bad luck to start the new year with a dirty or messy house.

Hogmanay dinner

I did like starting the year with a big meal.

George Square celebration

Apparently this ended in 2011 – but since I was too busy first-footing while this was going on, I only ever saw the aftermath.

All the shops closed

This is one I miss, since I used to have a little cache of shops that didn’t close (you probably know the ones I mean, but I can’t refer to them now cos the name everybody used, including them, is now ‘racist’), and could impress others by nipping out and buying something like a bottle of milk on 01 January.

I’d add one more…

People not going out on 01 January

One thing I missed come the millennium was the quiet drive I used to enjoy at the start of the year.

Most of the world stayed in its bed, recovering from the New Year celebrations.

You could go for a drive, maybe anything from 50 to 100 miles north of Glasgow and barely see another soul (driving through the largely deserted city was almost spooky).

The last time I tried this it was horrible.

Previously, I’d maybe land somewhere like the car park on the Rest and Be Thankful and the biggest problem might be the snow.

The last time I made that trip on 01 January I couldn’t even have got into the car park, had I wanted to stop there.

I didn’t!

It was packed from end to end, and full of catering vans selling food to the crowd.

Seriously? Fish and chips from a van on the Rest and Be Thankful on New Year’s day.


I was done, and so were my nice New Year’s Day drives.

I’ve probably got better pics, taken on the day, and probably with snow, but they’re locked away on film.

But this one from 1984 was taken in the days, when the place would have been deserted come New Year.

Have a good one, and enjoy 2019.


31/12/2018 - Posted by | Civilian, Lost | ,

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