Rabbie Burns Day!
Here is the the Robert Burns Statue in Vancouver's Stanley Park, yesterday on January 24th.
The statue overlooks Coal Harbour and Vancouver's West End.
The bronze plaque says the statue was erected on August 25th, 1928 – that's almost 82 years ago.
January 25th was a long day for me. It started off early with a phone call from BBC Radio Scotland.
BBC Radio Scotland woke me up at 7am for a 9:30 am
interview. There is 8 hours time difference. After I was woken up, it was hard to get back to sleep, so I got onto the computer and listened to BBC Radio Scotland for awhile. It's always fun to listen to them both on New Year's Eve and Robbie Burns Day. Today was dedicated to everything Burns. They called me back around 9: 25 am and I listened to many different aspects of Burns. It was the program Drive, as many Scots are making their afternoon commute home.
Just before 10am PST/ 6pm GMT, they interviewed somebody having a Burns Supper in Antarctica. It was a fascinating story, about how cold it is there, and how their haggis comes in from the supply ship. And then they said they were going to Vancouver Canada, where Toddish McWong organizes a Robbie Burns Dinner with Chines food. I described the first 4 courses as an appetizer dish with haggis dim sum in the form of pork dumplings (su-mei), pan-fried Chinese turnip cake (for the neeps and tatties), served with honey bbq pork and jelly fish.
Second dish is deep-fried haggis and shrimp won ton, which the radio announcer seemed to like. Dish 3 is vegetarian winter melon soup, followed by dish 4 – traditional haggis served with Chinese lettuce wrap, so people can put some of the mixed vegetable filling with Chinese hoi sin bbq sauce on a lettuce leaf, then spoon in some haggis, and wrap it up like a hamburger to eat it!
Then they asked if I read any of Burns poetry. This was the cue for me to perform my “rap version” of “Address to the Haggis”
I rapped the first verse:
Great chieftain o' the puddin-race!
Aboon them a' ye tak your place,
Painch, tripe, or thairm:
Weel are ye wordy of a grace
As lang's my arm!
I told them that we have 500 people punching their fists into the air, yelling “As lang's my arm” and they had to laugh and say… “That's all the time we have now…”
Darn – way too short!