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Tuesday, 1 October 2019

A Tale of Two Tea Pots

As mentioned before, I once lived in Scotland. I still carry around this now very crumpled Scottish one pound note as a reminder of that time.

Royal Bank of Scotland One Pound Note 1989

I had a close friend there. She was attractive and intelligent, and gave short shrift to nonsense. We went to the cinema, classical concerts, the ballet and on country walks. She taught me Scottish words and phrases, and introduced me to Lewis Grassic Gibbon’s A Scots Quair. She stayed with me a few days when she moved house, and I stayed with her for my last couple of days in Scotland after getting my own house ready to rent out. Perhaps, in other circumstances, at a different time, it might have been more than a friendship.

I left Scotland at the end of the nineteen-eighties for a job in Nottingham. Soon after, walking along Pelham Street, or was it Goose Gate, I spotted a cheery Chinese tea pot in a shop window. I bought one, packed it up very carefully and posted it to my Scottish friend for her birthday. She was absolutely delighted.

Chinese Style Tea Pot

I then fell in love with the future Mrs D. who was also attractive and intelligent but did put up with nonsense. Wondering what to buy for her birthday, I thought of my Scottish friend’s tea pot, so returned to the shop and bought another, exactly the same. She was absolutely delighted. It seemed neither necessary nor appropriate to mention the earlier one and I forgot it. We were married around a year later. My Scottish friend came to the wedding and was pleased to say grace because she was by then a Church of Scotland Minister.

My house in Scotland had been rented out not through choice but because at the time it was impossible to sell. Eventually, market conditions changed and someone bought it. I drove up with Mrs D. to sort things out for the last time. Before coming home we called to see my Scottish friend at her Manse near Stirling. 
 
She offered us tea and biscuits. On the tray was her Chinese tea pot. My wife spotted it immediately. She was not delighted.


There's more about my Scottish friend in this earlier post: Jumped Down Catholics (it's quite long)

19 comments:

  1. Hahahahahaha, you two-timing tea potter, you!

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  2. What a tale! I am sure, though, that things were alright again once you explained everything. Did you start with the sentence "It is not what it looks like..."?

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    1. Both saw the funny side, fortunately, and we're still married.

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  3. I was sort of hoping (sorry!) the story would end the way it did! What's the Gaelic for 'please, forgive me'?

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    1. You were hoping for a punch up weren't you? Not Gaelic but English with a Scottish accent and quite a lot of their own words. "It's an aal, aal tongue bit ah'm sorry tae say that it's deeing. It's nae jist deid yit, bit it's nae in a very healthy state. The younger folk they jist dinna ken fit ah'm spikkin aboot."

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    2. Ha! I barely ken what yer spikkin about. ;)

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    3. You are obviously blessed with a gift for languages. There's more about my Scottish friend and her accent on this earlier post (which I've also added above): https://www.taskerdunham.com/2016/01/jumped-down-catholics.html

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  4. Ah, mon, and is that it pictured there on your new counter top?

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    Replies
    1. The very same but not in the kitchen. It cheered the breakfast table for many years until it became porous, although we can't see any obvious crack or anything.

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  5. Haha, I like the sound of both of these ladies.

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    1. Hi Estelle. Thought you'd gone! Nice to hear from you again. You're nearly at the bottom of my 'follow' list.

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  6. Oh-oh! I think that is what is called a "faux-pas". Did you also give these love teapots to attractive and intelligent women in Wales and Ireland? What a devilish rogue you were Mr Dunham!

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    1. Oh I would, and to you too cher pudding, but last time I was in Nottingham the shop was long gone.

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