Thursday, January 01, 2009

"Up With The Bonnets of Bonnie Dundee"

I realised this morning that 2008 made it ten years since Simon died. I was so caught up in work around April that I didn’t even mark the day, let alone recognise that it’s been a decade without him. He was a good friend and the nearest thing I ever had to a brother and, while time may have dulled the sharpness of the pain, I still miss him deeply whenever I think of him.

“He died on a cold mountainside,
The city couldn’t hold him,
He lived just for the ride,
And he was a friend of mine.”

So far down the line, I can’t say what kind of person he might have been today, only that I wish he’d had the chance.

But then the world could drown under the avalanche of ‘What Ifs…’ and ‘If Onlys…’ that surround our lives.

Edit: 02 Jan 09 10:45

I had a look at my webstats this morning and noticed that the most recent hit had arrived from a Google search for the phrase “The Bonnets of Bonnie Dundee”. I googled it myself and, sure enough, this post was ranked at No. 2 - even above Wikipedia’s article (which came in at No. 3). So, in case anyone else gets directed to this post by Google and wonders what the f*ck it has to do with Claverhouse, the Jacobites or Sir Walter Scott… well actually it’s got nothing to do with them at all, so you should try another link.

The connection is quite tangential and, to be honest, there are only two people I’m still in touch with who would stand a chance of getting the reference – and neither of them read this blog. For the rest of you, here’s the explanation:

Back in our student days, when Jess and I were running the Student Union, the accountant was a retired guy called Iain Thompson; a great character who came in a few days a week to do the clever stuff on the finances and produce our management accounts. He died a year or so after we left office and we were invited to the funeral by his widow.

It was the first funeral I’d been to of someone I’d known well and cared about and it looked like being an ordeal. However, in keeping with his character, the old goat had laid down quite a few instructions on how he wanted to be remembered and the whole affair was very cheery and positive. The recessional music was the jaunty tune of ‘Up With The Bonnets of Bonnie Dundee’ and I left with a smile on my face. Bizarrely it’s one of my most enduring memories of Iain and, to this day, the title of that reel has been a touchstone to remind me to look on the bright side and remember the good times.

1 comment:

Jessica said...

Mmm.. I think I just about get it, or at least I did before I read your explanation. Strange, I was only thinking about Iain the other day.