Thursday, August 02, 2007


Out for a drive with my oldest, bestest friend this morning, enjoying the rare good weather, we drove with the windows rolled down and the music at full volume. If I wanted you to think I was cool I’d lie and tell you the music was R&B or techno or rap or drum ‘n’ bass, but I think you all know by now that I’m not the coolest kid in school. We listened to Take That; their old album. So old it wasn’t even a CD, but a cassette tape. “Everything Changes,” and “Back For Good,” blared out as we sang our little hearts out, remembering the days when we truly thought we were in love with those men. Zannie was in love with Robbie Williams, and I was in love with Mark Owen. We were going to marry them and have their babies.

Somehow that didn’t work out. And frankly, we are quite relieved.

We stayed close to our little village, we didn’t want to end up in the centre of Glasgow, or caught in congested traffic. We drove by the farms in our village, past the cows (or the coos, as we call them), past the sheep and the wallabies (yes, our village has a field full of wallabies), and then onwards and outwards to the hills and mountains situated close to Zannie’s house.

Sometimes, when I take the time to appreciate it, and when the weather conditions are just right, the scenery from my very doorstep takes my breath away. The hills we found ourselves driving towards were highlighted by the sun, drawing attractive patterns in the valleys where the light tried hard to reach. The mountains were decorated with sheep and the rare goat, gorging themselves on the luscious green of the foliage.

Zannie drove on, further out into the wilderness, where it felt like no one had ever set foot before. The nature was rife, flowers were blooming, there was a stream that trickled down the mountain, with crystal clear fresh water that I’d spent many a happy time paddling in when I was growing up here, on family picnics on the hills.

“Shall we go to the wee castle up the road?” Zannie asked me, tying her long dark hair up in an attempt to cool down.

“Ah why not,” I replied, “Might be a wee bit busy though, tourists and weddings and all that…”

When we approached the winding country road that led to the castle, we saw a commotion ahead. There was an ambulance which was just driving off, and a group of people in a semi-circle, talking amongst each other, wildly and animated. Obviously there had been some sort of accident and they were the excited onlookers.

Zannie parked at the side of the road between a Land Rover and a Mondeo (reverse parking which took all of 10 minutes…) and the two of us walked arm in arm towards the crowd, not wanting to appear nosy, but curious as to what had happened.

Honestly, we were just going to ignore the accident scene, just walk past, turn right and stroll along the path to the castle, but when we saw the feathers strewn everywhere across the road, curiosity got to both of us and we joined the onlookers.

“Aww no, did someone hit a bird?” Zannie, the animal lover, asked the nearest man. White and brown downy feathers were all over the road, blowing in the slight breeze. There was no sign of any road kill, no bird, no animal. There wasn’t even a single spot of blood.

“Naw,” the guy said, looking bemused, “Naw, a tourist was hit by a car. He was ok, said he wasn’t even hurt, nothing broken but he’s gone to the hospital to be checked over.”

Zannie and I exchanged glances, and she furrowed her perfectly plucked eyebrows. “But,” she turned back to the man, “what are all the feathers from?”

“He was wearing a puffa jacket. When the car hit, it ripped the jacket right open and oot came all the feathers.”

I laughed, I couldn’t help it. It was the worst time to get a fit of the giggles, but as soon as Zannie looked at me, and I looked at her, we both burst into uncontrollable laughter.

“What on earth,” I snorted, “was he doing wearing a puffa jacket on a hot day like this?”

“Och, he was American.” The man said. “They American tourists think oor climate is freezing even when it’s 30 degrees.” The statement only made Zannie snort loudly, bend over double and wheeze with laughter. Trying to hold in my own laughter caused by the sight of Zannie and her face contorted, I dragged her away from the scene, my shoulders shaking.

The rest of the morning it kept coming back to us. One minute we would be sitting on the swings, talking about dissertations, the next, one of us would be doubled over, unable to breath and wheezing, “I…I…hahaha…I thought it was…a…BIRD!” and we laughed for another ten minutes or so.

And a few minutes after Zannie had dropped me off at my house, the phone rang. I picked up the receiver and before I could even say anything, I could hear laughter on the other end. “I…found…I found haha!...a feather in my hair!” And we were off again.


Poor guy, in the very unlikely chance that you are reading this, I apologise for finding your predicament so amusing. It wasn’t exactly your predicament we were laughing at, in fact, I was genuinely concerned. It was just the feathers. And the puffa jacket. And Zannie’s contorted face as she rasped and snorted.

But at least now I know where to go if I want to plump up my downy pillows.

Totally unacepptable. Sorry.


T.D. Newton said...

Wow, that is funny stuff. I hear Americans wear the weirdest crap when they go abroad and I guess this proves it.

Don't feel bad, Princesse, the guy in the jacket wasn't even hurt. You can laugh at his situation all you want. If he had had so much as a twisted collarbone, though, it would have been a "tragic accident" and you would have had no right to giggle. Laugh away, my friend. Laugh away.

(yay! word verification is back!)

Miss Despina said...

Oh dear Jez, weirdo verification is back on! Mwahahaha.
Mark Owen used to live up the road from me. There's a rumour that his mum got in trouble for attacking a load of fans who were camping out in the garden, by using a hosepipe, in the middle of a hosepipe ban!
I can't believe you laughed at the poor guy's puffer jacket! But you would also have been laughing if you'd seen him wearing it, I suppose!

T.D. Newton said...

What is a hosepipe??

sylvie d said...

"I was not laughing at is just the way you slipped..."
How many times have I got into trouble for laughing when I should not!

Lis of the North said...

"when the kettle's boiled hear me shout, Tip me up and pour me out"

Sorry, couldn't help it.

Did enjoy your story. That's the sort of thing that would have my Mum crying with mirth. ;)

Princesse Ecossaise said...

You and me both Sylv!!! When I get the giggles I just cannot stop. I laugh when someone tells me their hamster dies. I'm not being nasty, not deliberatley anyway, I think I laugh when I don't know what else to do!

Despina!!!! NO WAY!!! You lived close to Mark Owen? I am so jealous! Hmmm Mark Owen's hosepipe...interesting! You can't blame me for laughing at the whole puffa jacket / feather thing. It was just too...weird.

TD, seeing an American in Scotland always kind of cracks me up - in a nice way. They always seem to be in awe at how small everything is! They describe everything as 'adorable'. Once an American tourist asked me how long the Royal Mile is. (It's a mile long. Amazingly.) Bless his cotton socks.

A hosepipe, dear friend, is a hosepipe. A hose. You water you're flowers with it. It's attached to an outdoor tap. What's the word in American?!

Princesse Ecossaise said...

Lis, you're grand, isn't it a great wee tune?

Believe me, I was crying with mirth! Even now, as I sit alone staring at my laptop I keep chuckling out loud! I really must stop this...

Zhu said...

Oh, gosh, I'd have laugh too ! In fact, I did and I swallow my Diet Coke the wrong way. Glad to report I'm okay now.

But Take That...??? At least, listen to Ace of Base !!! :$

sugar007 said...

Princesse, I also laugh when I don't know what to do too...Giggle away me dear best therapy out there.

ColbyPants said...

the word is, uhm, HOSE. (minus the pipe.

why the hell would someone be wearing what I am presuming is a down jacket in the middle of the summer?? They mustve been like from florida or arizona or something. I live in the northern US and anything over like 18* C is shorts weather!


T.D. Newton said...

Down jacket? I thought it was one of those puffy "marshmallow" type jackets that people keep wearing these days. Maybe they are the same. Princesse can you post a picture of what kind of jacket you're talking about?

And yeah, hosepipe == hose. The word "pipe" describes something way more rigid than your usual run-of-the-mill garden hose.

Yes, bless our cotton socks. I hate cotton socks these days; they are cheap and for some reason that's all you can really get anywhere unless you want to pay out the nose. Frankly, it's ridiculous.

LOL @ the Royal Mile confusion! That's like asking, "How long is a meter on Mars?"

Ghosty said...

1. What is a 'wallabie'?

2. Yes, Americans dress bizarrely when we go abroad. So do you people. Don't think for a minute we don't secretly giggle when a burly 6' Scotsman waltzes by in a kilt. A thick, woolen one. In the heat of summer. I look to my buddy, whisper 'Catholic school' and have ourselves a grin. We love you Scots, but you're as funny as the rest of us.

T.D. - yes, 'down' and 'marshmallow' would be the same. I'd be willing to bet, however, he was wearing a down vest, without sleeves or a collar. Much cooler, those.

"Take That"!? Yikes!

T.D. Newton said...

Ah, yes, thanks Ghosty. I did a google image search for "down jacket" and they are the marshmallow jackets I was previously referring to. Though I'm not 100% sure I used to call them that, now. Marshmallows are white except in cereal.

Princesse Ecossaise said...

You all totally crack me up!!!!

Where to begin where to begin?

Firstly, I love marshmallows mmmm. Anyone ever toasted them on a bbq? When I asked FP if we could do that he looked at me like I was a total eejit.

And the downy jacket sounds like a marshmallow-esque jacket yes TD. Except here it's called a puffa or a puffer jacket. And it's incredibly hot. I guess you are right Tom, he probably would be from one of the hottest parts of the states. And ghosty I'll tell you this - there were far too many feathers floating about just to be one 'vest' or as we call them 'body warmers'.

In fact, when you said a down vest I was imagining a guy wearing a thick wife beater vest filled with feathers. The difference between British and American language is quite confusing!

A wallabie, my dear friend, is like a kangaroo. I think they are of the same family. They are soooo cute. And yes, I think I may have to agree with you on the wierdness of us Scots abroad. We are just as odd. However, as strange as it may seem to wear a thick kilt in the middle of summer, you can't deny that it's fecking sexy and all the girls are suddenly swooning! Anyway, the secret is that he's getting a nice breeze on his balls so he's happy.

TD cotton socks are much nicer than itchy woolen socks which I used to be made to wear when hill walking. Disgusting things, euch!

Damn it Tom I missed you and your comments!!!!! Never break your computer again :-|

Sugar you are my soul sister!! And they do say laughter is the best medicine.

Zhu Im so glad that your little mishap with the diet coke wasn't too serious, I was rather concerned! Ace of Base are pretty rocking my dear, but what about Take That prancing around the stage wearing string vests and leather hotpants? They were cool in their heyday!

Ghosty said...

"Wife beater" vest? Hahaha .. what imagery! The only 'wife beaters' I know about are the sleeveless undershirts men sometimes wear. Called that because only someone with no class or upbringing would wear one by itself.

I don't believe I've ever seen a wallabie .. I'll look it up later.

Cotton socks! I'm wearing some right now! White ones, even! Whoohoo!

Princesse Ecossaise said...

Ghosty that is exactly the type of thing I was talking about! because 'vest' in British is 'undershirt'!

T.D. Newton said...

I never thought we'd have such a huge language barrier speaking what is, technically, the same language! Slang words are crazy!!

Wife beaters aren't referred to as "vests" over here; vests are more of a formal affair. These sleeveless things are called "tank tops" and frankly I think they're kind of useless as undershirts.

Wool socks may be itchy and hot but cotton socks basically do nothing for a hairy/sweaty food problem. Mine aren't profuse or anything (don't get at the wrong idea! i'm not a hobbit!!) but when I wear microfiber or polyester blend socks I am much more comfortable.

I've never toasted marshmallows on a BBQ, only a campfire. Then again, I've never grilled fruit either and that is supposed to be awesome. Grilled peaches especially. I bet I get some weird looks when I try it (bbq is for meat!!).

I used to own a puffer jacket when I lived in Utah but I had to get rid of it. When I wore it, it made me look and feel like a marshmallow. And oh my god do they make a ton of noise rubbing against themselves!!

Princesse Ecossaise said...

Haha!! When I was 12 I had a 'boyfriend' who was called Scott. When I was on holiday in the states I bought a puffa jacket by some brand called 'Scott & Fox'. I had to buy it, just because it had his name on it. It was bright yellow and black like a fat bumble bee.

Back at school it was the beginning of the term, and I entered my very first week of high school wearing this vile thing.

Then when it rained it really really really honked. I mean it totally stank! Apparently it was the feathers. People avoided me and my smelly jacket and my dad forced me to wear it because he'd paid a lot for a warm jacket.

Then Scott told his friend to tell me I was dumped (we'd never spoken to each other - not even when we were 'going out') and I had to wear that bloody thing with 'Scott & Fox' scrolled all over it for the whole of winter.

No more puffa jackets. Ever!

P.S. TD I think you pay way too much attention to your socks...

T.D. Newton said...

Hey, I can't help wanting comfortable and dry feet. Don't be mean to my fancy socks.

Cotton socks are cheap and cheaply made; they stretch out, they fall apart, and I am only really allowed to wear them with jeans. I have to wear chinos or cargos to work and you know how the socks have to match the pants........ o_0

That is funny about the stinky down jacket. I won't relay any horror stories about jackets I used to wear in school (but I do have a few).

Speaking of down, I love down pillows and I have never had a problem with them stinking but I do have a problem with them being pokey. I have two pillowcases around them at all times so I don't get a feather-to-the-face!

Boy, am I talkative!

Princesse Ecossaise said...

Is anyone else lovin the sloganizer banner at the bottom of the page? At the moment it says "Princesse Ecossaise - What a Legend" haha! Love it!

TD...I can't believe you and I are having an in-depth discussion about your socks! I think we've hit an all time low...mind you, I've been thinking and you're perfectly correct. A man can not get away with wearing cheap white socks and expensive black trousers together. That's right, I said TROUSERS. Pants are underwear!

As for the don pillows, you may not believe this, in fact I don't believe it, but a woman claimed she pulled a feather from her nipple, after having slept with down pillows, inhaling a feather and it came our her lungs into her boob into her nipple.

T.D. Newton said...

Well, I know apparel isn't the most interesting of all subjects, but your blog does kind of attract discussions about "whatever". If you REALLY didn't want to talk about my socks, you wouldn't respond, eh?

I used to be one of those idiot guys who wore white cotton socks with black slacks and dressy shoes (or even faded black cotton socks, bleckth). NO ONE TEACHES MEN HOW TO DRESS or how to pluck our eyebrows. Men aren't supposed to be vain ... therefore I don't understand how women can expect us to ever look good. Sorry, now I'm totally ranting, but this touches on a much bigger issue.

The feather/nipple thing? That's totally impossible. For one thing, if you inhaled a feather and it went into your lung you'd probably need to be rushed to the emergency room. It's not like your lungs are big empty cavities. And think of all of the layers of organ and muscle and fat it would have to "work" itself through. On the other hand, if it went down through her esophagus, it would have been consumed by stomach acid. Verdict: not physically possible. Or, as I hear the expression to be used, "a load of bollocks."

The thing usually works but right now it isn't showing anything. Just the hand and the bra strap :)

ColbyPants said...

I like how you made i sound like I broke my computer by bashing it over my head or something. I will try to restrain myself from doing that in the future.

by the way, why were there wallabys in Scotland, arent they australian? Is someone farming them, and if so, why?


FP said...

i quite like your slogonizer except when it's writen down: "you'd better get inside Princesse ecossaise..." i really dont appreciate this slogan... :/
But the rest is really good. :)


Princesse Ecossaise said...

hahaha! Oh baby! I've never seen that slogan, maybe it only came up because it knew it was you!

Hang on hang the picture on the sloganizer banner a shoulder?! It looks like a bum and a thong to me!

I think you're right about the feather nipple thing TD, my dad came up with all the same points that you did and it doesn't make sense that this could happen. But still, I don't sleep with down pillows...just in case.

Tom, I think someone must be farming the wallabies, they're not wild, just in a random field. I've no idea what it's all about, I didn't even know it was strange until a few years ago when someone wouldn't believe me that our village had a field full of wallabies!

FP said...

and you thought it was a bum and a thong and you let it ?? it doesn't make sense to me, it's not you.


Princesse Ecossaise said...

hey calm it babe, it's just a bum, it's not MY need to go off on one

fp said...

it just doesn't make sense to me that you let a sexy pic of a bum with a thong to slogonize you, to represent you. Even if it's not your bum. That's all babe.


Princesse Ecossaise said...

Ok, I see what you mean. I didn't think of it like that. But baby, this was the only girly version - the rest were ugly and mannish.

Anyway, no one else thinks it's a bum. It's apparently a shoulder.

Don't be mad mon ange, je t'aime x

fp said...

ok baby i understand now.
let it like a shoulder, i do prefer.
I'm not bad anymore now, Je t'aime X


T.D. Newton said...

It certainly does NOT look like a bum with a thong! I could totally understand FP being mad about that (it's just weird and suggestive for all the wrong reasons). It has a hand on it for crying out loud; it looks like the person is grabbing their own butt. Whatever, I instantly thought it was a shoulder + bra strap. Still a little suggestive (ooo, shirtless girl) but not nearly what he was thinking.

I have had 2 glasses of red wine. Yay!

Thumbs up to your dad, Princesse, he's a smart man to have likewise debunked the feather/nipple story. I would never give up my down pillows. Frankly I wouldn't give them up even if a feather DID come out of my nipple.

Princesse Ecossaise said...

Well whose hand is on the woman's shoulder?! I just can't see a shoulder there, I don't know what it is but I want to get to the BOTTOM of this...hehehehe get it?

Oh well, you lot can think what you think and I shall know what I know.

My dad is a very clever man, but also very funny too. Not funny in a haha way. Funny in a strange way.

T.D. Newton said...

It's the girl's left shoulder and her right hand. I imagine the entire picture is she is somewhat "hugging" herself and kind of looking back over her shoulder in a dejected, aloof sort of way. You know how models are.

I, too, am pretty funny in a strange way. What's really hilarious is that my fiancee's dad is very similarly funny/strange, so I keep joking with her that she's marrying someone just like her father. Yesterday she said, "I always thought I would but I meant the GOOD parts..." LOL