After nearly six years, it is rare that I have to ask a Scottish person to repeat himself when speaking. But I’ve just returned from my local butcher, where I had to resort to my confused “sorry?” response on three separate occasions during the short time it took me to by beef strips and chicken fillets.
When I’m out and about (or oot and aboot, as it were), I can feather my Canadian accent with a bit of a lilt, thereby allowing me to blend in enough so I don’t get asked where I’m from. I like this - blending in.
But when I am making a right idiot of myself, either not understanding something or when I need directions, I switch to naïve Canadian mode, wedging my accent so firmly into the “I’m not from here” corner that people will assume I’m either just arrived or a tourist. I don’t know why I do this. I suppose it’s another way of making myself forgettable. Let people draw a quick assumption and have it over. And so my dance of social awkwardness continues.
Every since my beloved and I have been discussing the idea of moving back to Canada, Scotland has been mocking me. The clocks have changed and suddenly the world is filled with light, blossoms and of all things, THE SUN.
The fields are green, the air is sweet, and the warmth pushes through me like it is trying to erase every memory of the horrible winter that just passed, when I was listless and depressed for months.
One of my work colleagues said something that is weighing on me. He said I underestimate my attachment to this place. I wonder if I do. If we leave, it will be very hard for me to come back. Not just the starting from scratch yet again, but all the cost and applications that would be required. I have moved many times in my life and the desire for a porch and a hammock is replacing my once irrepressible nomadic itch.
This two countries thing is difficult. No matter what you choose, there will be a void on the other side which you cannot reach to fill. It will always be there, and all your beautiful memories will both shine and cut like glass.
In the meantime, Scotland mocks me. Sigh. Oh well. When in doubt, cake.
Twilight Scrawls by Kirstin Maguire
7 hours ago