Translation Musings: it’s nearly time for tatties an’ neets!

Jan 22, 2015 | Uncategorized

scottish flagSunday sees another Burns Day with much piping, haggis and, of course, whiskey galore! And Scotland has been quite the centre of attention for the UK this year. I, for one, am glad we are still as one and I hope the celebrations at the weekend are enjoyed by all!

As someone married to a man of proud Scottish heritage, I am used to the odd Scottish term coming up in general conversation. We have oft found ourselves up to our oxters, for example – armpits if you don’t already know! Apparently it can also be used as a verb – oxtering (helping!) someone home from a Burns supper, perhaps.

Another phrase much uttered and passed down by the paternal grandparents (in law) was peelie-wally (to rhyme with rally) – pale and sickly – as in ‘You’re looking a wee bit peelie-wally‘. Originating from Scots word palie, meaning sickly or listless, it may well have become the English word pale. A very satisfying and descriptive phrase I think – you can even use it for your cup of tea if the teabag came out a bit too swiftly!

If you haven’t got a Burns Supper planned, don’t be greetin about it. Why not just join hands anyway, wipe away the tears and blast out a lovely tuneful rendition of Auld Lang Syne (times long passed).

Happy Burns Night all!