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Wallace monument from Stirling Castle on a rather dreich day.

Wallace monument from Stirling Castle on a rather dreich day. Photo J L Macfadyen

Our IDL trip to Stirling Castle (look here) took place on a very, very, VERY wet day. Not that we expected it to be a big problem, but waiting in the rain while tickets were organised led to some rather damp and bored teenagers – never a good combination. A guided tour calmed the commotion somewhat, but hysteria resurfaced after lunch – to be fair, sitting in a small room with nothing to do once your sandwiches are gone isn’t especially inspiring.  Our I Spy worksheets did their job though, even with those who claimed they hadn’t realised they were supposed to write things down 🙄

And then we bumped into the castle’s finest: Renaissance personalities who wander the rooms of the palace, explaining their life and times to visitors. Our group met two of these paragons today and while both  provided excellent information, Sir David Lindsay of the Mount was outstanding, providing a masterclass in storytelling.

The Stirling Castle website says,

Sir David would have needed a strong and powerful voice in order to make his presence felt as he clutched his staff of state to direct courtiers.

Well, he certainly has a strong presence, He kept twenty seven young people (and four school staff) absolutely silent and focused for a good fifteen minutes, telling them about 16th century football, the ancient origins of the Scottish and English nations, the myth of vegetables being healthy, why they shouldn’t bathe too often, the Christian message behind the unicorn tapestries, the beginnings of masonry and the correct way to pass wind.  They could have listened to him for the whole afternoon.

Sir David also provided ample opportunities for questions, but no-one asked him about his codpiece this year – until after the rest of us had moved away 😳

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