Jock Tampson’s Bairns

Irene & Alec MacDonald


I love trains, always have. Right now I am taking the train from Edinburgh to King’s Cross in London. As it turns out, the train is a nice place to make conversation. Really though, it seems anywhere you are around a Scot is a nice place to make conversation. I was just telling the MacDonald’s that it is so much easier to talk to strangers in Scotland than it is in America. In the States we kind of keep to ourselves, limiting any interactions to chit chat or the avoidance thereof.

When asked how he felt about the vote, Alec MacDonald let out a sigh and contemplated. He told me;

“I voted yes but my wife voted no.”

I raised my eyebrows and looked to Irene MacDonald. She confirmed her husband’s assertion with a nod and a smile. Curious how two different votes would play out in the same house, I asked if that made for some tense dinners at home?

“No, I didn’t tell him how I was going to vote.”

Ah, intriguing. A look to Mr. MacDonald showed that he didn’t seem to mind. This wasn’t going to become an issue between them. Mrs. MacDonald went on to share:

“It was just too big of a risk for me. There wasn’t enough information about financials and the pound.”

Mr. MacDonald then stepped in to say:

“She’s more practical, I voted with my heart. It was a big risk to see an independent Scotland, a once in a lifetime opportunity. It was a risk I was willing to take.”

Later Mr. MacDonald explained that it was entirely common to have different votes in the same household. He says there is an old Scottish saying of:

“We’re all Jock Tampson’s bairns.”

Thank you Alec & Irene MacDonald for the water (the train only had sparkling water available – more on that later) and the enjoyable trip to London.

Categories: Scotland, The Scottish People, The Scottish VoteTags: , , , , ,

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