1971 Boroughmuir class.

1971 Boroughmuir class.

Wednesday, 31 August 2016

Wednesday, 1st September, 1971

Back in tae 'Burrie' today. It wiz a braw day. I like this time o' the year, particularly the early morning coolness. Emerging from the 16 bus at Viewforth I noticed the dew wiz still glistening oan Bruntsfield Links; there wiz a watery sun out which grew stronger and it really became quite warm as the day progressed.

In Biology I somehow managed tae break a pair o' tweezers-what am I like-I dinnae exactly have tae draw attention tae maself.

After school I went down tae the phone box across from Oxgangs Police Station and phoned ma cousin David Ross-brilliant, he and his sister are going tae Meadowbank Sports Centre the morn's night. It will make it much easier fir me tae go along and join in wie the Edinburgh Athletic Club training group as I dinnae really know anyone, which is a big hurdle fir me, if you'll forgive the pun! I cannae wait-I'm really looking forward tae it!

Before going home fir ma tea I had a guid game o' tennis down at Colinton Mains Park wie Boo-Boo. Now that we're in tae September I'm no sure how many mair games we'll get afore they start taking the nets doon fir the winter-we're kind o' squeezing the last fruits o' the summer.

Nana and Gaga are here-when they were leaving they gave me a wee lift down tae the chippy-I'm now tucking in tae a pie supper-BRAW MAN!

Tuesday, 30 August 2016

Tuesday, 31st August, 1971

Unbelievable-I got clouted across the lug by the French teacher-sacre bleu and Mon dieu!; that's a' the thanks you get fir attending 'Burrie'-it's nae wonder I skive aff so much. 

It's ma worst academic subject by far-you cannae really count Music. I've tried tae hide away as much as possible in French, but it's a bit harder in a double period. My ear's still ringing now-it wiz a fair auld violent whack he gave me-I could tell he wiz in a bit o' a bad mood first thing and I ended up getting the worst o' it.

I've got some homework tae do from Miss Boyd-we've tae do some graphs for Biology-I should be able tae manage that.

After ma tea, I took the number 5 bus down tae Meadowbank Sports Centre to go to athletics training for the first time. I wiz quite excited and wiz really looking forward tae it, but nervous too. Ma cousins, David and Eli (Eloise) Ross were both along, which made it much easier tae join in the group. I managed tae run a 200 metres in 25 seconds.

I took the number 4 bus home tae Oxgangs, stopping aff at Rissi's fir some chips for ma supper-it's been a long day and a long evening outing, but a braw yin-I cannae wait tae go back tae Meadowbank again! 

I've got a new jersey

Monday, 29 August 2016

Monday, 30th August, 1971

Gaga ran Anne, Iain and me up tae Oxgangs from Porty early this morn; it's the last day o' our wee week away, which has been very enjoyable-a lovely wee change for us.

I'm no entirely sure why, but I ended up skiving aff school; I didnae bother going in tae 'Burrie' at a'. Who knows why-perhaps the fact that I'm returning tae the auld pattern, staying at Oxgangs? That said, part o' the reason wiz because it's an English Bank Holiday and I wiz dead keen tae watch the second day o' the Great Britain v West Germany athletics international oan the box-it wiz live from Crystal Palace.

I spent the whole morning tidying up the hoose fir the return o' the honeymooners afore settling down tae watch 'Holiday Grandstand'.

Some o' the big names that I've been following the past few weeks were oan-they met wie mixed success. 'The Flying Scot', David Jenkins from Edinburgh wiz oan, but this time running ower the 200 metres-nae problem for the big man-he's a brilliant athlete. It must be amazing tae run for Britain against the Germans.

David Bedford came back from his disapointment in Helsinki tae win the 5000 metres; meanwhile, Scotland's Rosemary Stirling wiz just beaten, but like Jenkins had dropped down a distance.

The big surprise wiz Brendan Foster only finishing third after leading earlier oan in the 1500 metres.

Wie Maw 'n John back from Portsmouth, Nana 'n Gaga came out, so we a' caught up wie each others' news before settling in for the night tae watch a wee bit telly. 

Being a holiday, 'Billy Smart's Circus' wiz oan-Gaga took us a' tae see it a few years ago at Murrayfield. I had a wee beer.

Sunday, 28 August 2016

Sunday, 29th August, 1971

Nana and Gaga awoke me at 6.30 a.m. and I cycled from Porty tae the City Hospital at Greenbank. It wiz very quiet oot and I mostly had the Queen's Park tae maself. 

It's a mainly and annoyingly slightly uphill gradient a' the way tae Greenbank-of course we're really travelling from the sea to the hills, but once I got into ma stride it wiz fine. 

Stuart Baird had dropped aff the newspapers from his wee Triumph Herald at the hospital gate , so a' I had to do wiz load a' the different 'Sundays' up oan a hospital barrow that wiz lying around and I wiz aff, travelling from ward tae ward. 

Although some o' the patients hardly seem to know what day o' the week it is, many others are glad to see me and I strive tae have a cheerful presence and a friendly wee quip tae hand. 

I managed tae sell oot every single newspaper and handed the takings intae Bairds shop oan ma way back down tae Porty-it's more or less downhill a' the way, so I flew back down; Arthur's Seat wiz a wee bit busier and the sheep were out grazing too-it's like the country in the city.

Photograph by Wullie Croal

It wiz grand tae get back for a well-deserved breakfast-the successful adventurer returns! It wiz the full whack today-porridge, brown sugar 'n cream followed by eggs 'n bacon, a few mushrooms and some toast 'n butter-braw!

I settled back oan Nana's big comfy and squashy armchair and read the Sunday Express and the Sunday Post-the working man at ease! Before I knew it, Sunday lunch wiz served up-like breakfast it wiz the full works. 

After lunch, Gaga took us a' down tae Musselburgh for a wee Sunday run and tootle along the shore. Nana wiz looking fir some agates. The harbour and the housing have a real olde worlde feel to them.

We got back mid-afternoon in time tae sit and enjoy an Andy Williams film, called 'I'd Rather Be Rich'-I'd echo that! It wiz a feel guid and a rather charming wee film from the very start, as Sandra Dee swings across the stage, wie Robert Goulet and Andy singing the title song.

Late evening there wiz a very braw film oan wie ma favourite actor, Gregory Peck, called 'The Keys Of The Kingdom". It wiz set in China, wie a wee bit in the Scottish Borders. 

It wiz quite inspirational, making the priesthood sound a very attractive and fulfilling way o' life.

Saturday, 27 August 2016

Saturday, 28th August, 1971

Wie Maw 'n John still away oan honeymoon, it's still strange wie the three o' us, Annie, Iain and me, awakening at Porty, but it's a nice wee change and we're quite enjoying ourselves. 

After another braw breakfast wie porridge 'n bacon oan toast, we went up tae collect Iain's one pound reward from the police-nice money if you can get it!

Meanwhile, Heather wiz dropped aff up town-she's away tae the northlands oan holiday-I think it's tae somewhere called Alltnacriche-outdoor stuff or horse riding stuff-hacking a think they call it.

Fir me it wiz an excellent afternoon oan the box-Great Britain v West Germany at the athletics-whit wie the Europeans; the Edinburgh Highland Games and ma visit tae train oan the 'tartan track' at Meadowbank last night, I'm quite fired up aboot trying oot the sport.

We settled back fir the evening-half way through, Gaga took us down tae St Andrew's Restaurant fir a wee Saturday treat o' some chips. 

Late oan, Gaga and I sat up together watching 'Sportsreel'-nae so guid fir him as Rangers were beaten by Celtic, 3-0-I think he might have tae get used tae it; other than that, a braw Saturday.

Friday, 26 August 2016

Friday, 27th August, 1971

Although we've been back to Boroughmuir for a couple o' weeks, today wiz the school church service at Montpelier Park. I quite enjoy these occasions, although sometimes a bit o' a giggle starts and it's difficult tae suppress a laugh. 

Because it took up a fair amount o' the morning, it wiz therefore a very easy and different sort o' a Friday and we ended up getting away early too-it's a guid feeling to have attended school a' week-that's a first! Wie getting away early I just took the number 45 single decker bus from Bruntsfield Links down tae Porty.

David and Peter-a few years later!

I had been looking forward tae going up to Meadowbank Sports Centre for the first time. I went up after ma tea and met wie ma cousin, David Ross. We enjoyed doing a wee bit o' training together. It wiz very quiet as it's no an official training evening, but there were a couple o' serious looking athletes training called Duncan Baker and Scott Brodie. They were doing some 60 metre sprints; I asked if i could join in-they were very friendly, but probably bemused at ma efforts-I wisnae really very guid, but it's given me the bug! I'm tae phone David oan Sunday-I cannae wait! 

Knox and Duncan Baker

Back 'home' tae Porty; Gaga treated us a' tae chips from St Andrew's Restaurant-absolutely braw-different class from Rissi's, Oxgangs.

Thursday, 25 August 2016

Thursday, 26th August, 1971

Gaga drove the three o' us from Porty oot tae Oxgangs first thing in the morning and I then went intae 'Burrie'-almost a week in and I've put in a reasonable shift, at least by my standards-the week is ticking by quite nicely.

We had a guid laugh in Music, wie puir Dr Cassels; I sometimes wonder why I have tae go along tae Music. The teacher delivers a class which is aimed at musicians-those who can play 'n read music. Whereas I'm utterly clueless-I'm completely at sea and don't have a single clue about what's going oan. I'm similar tae one or two others-basically I've been hiding away as best I can for three years-it's just a waste o' time fir me-a few o' the 'gamer' others who are the same as me cause chaos in his class.

Come the school bell I took the 16 bus home tae Oxgangs and met up wie Anne; the two o' us just took the bus down tae Porty ourselves, whereas Iain went down in the car wie Gaga later.

Nana and Aunt Heather are away tae the Edinburgh Mineral Club tonight. I sat in wie Gaga, Anne and Iain having a wee beer and watching telly. The box wiz fu' o' delights-'Top O' The Pops'; 'The Andy Williams Show'; 'The First Churchills', but the wee gem came right at the end o' the evening.

It wiz the first o' a new series about people escaping the rat race-tonight featured John Ridgway oan his journey tae Ardmore-one tough hombre-he rowed the Atlantic Ocean wie Chay Blyth-incredible!

Wednesday, 24 August 2016

Wednesday, 25th August, 1971

Telephone David Ross

I phoned ma cousin David about going along tae Meadowbank Sports Centre tae have a wee go at athletics-we're going along this Friday; I'm really looking forward tae visiting the stadium-especially after watching the international athletics there last Saturday wie Iain 'n Boo-Boo.

I've been a guid boy and put in a full shift at 'Burrie' before going back home to Oxgangs. Rather than taking the bus down to Porty I cycled down instead. Oan a late summer's tea-time, it wiz pretty enjoyable-a lot of it is slightly down hill wie occasional uphill flurries-I'm feeling quite fit the now and it wiz good tae put in a guid wee workout afore getting a braw tea at Nana's.

Not a bad day and I'm now enjoying putting ma feet up and watching the telly. We watched a 'Paul Temple' episode-'Winner Takes All' which had a horse racing background-in trying tae be true tae life it even included Peter O'Sullivan oan the commentary.

Tuesday, 23 August 2016

Tuesday, 24th August, 1971

Another guid breakfast-it's a meal in itself and certainly keeps me going until lunchtime.

Gaga gave us a lift out tae Oxgangs-I enjoyed sitting in the front o' the car reading his 'Scottish Daily Express'-it's a guid read, particularly the sports pages.

I've started skiving again, but it's not quite as bad as it sounds-only periods 6 and 7 immediately after lunch-I couldnae face double French which I'm absolutely useless at-I'm a' at sea-I'm no going tae get an 'O' Level in it; and because it's a double period, I feel much more exposed and that at some stage in the class when oor pipe smoking moustachioed French teacher puts me oan the spot, ma ignorance will be highlighted tae the sniggers o' a' in sundry in the class; so, in mitigation-(nae much wrong wie ma English)-there's a certain logic in ma approach-there's a clear threat, so I guess I've adopted an avoidance stratagem-and instead played at the putting oan Bruntsfield Links and thereafter sat oan a park bench contemplating life!

After going back fir periods 8 'n 9, I took the 16 bus back home tae Oxgangs. Gaga picked us up after his work at Tam Black's Butcher's shop around half past five to take us back down tae Porty. 

When we left in the car, both Les Ramage and Ali Douglas followed the car oan their 'Choppers'-whit a laugh!

There wiz a guid Elvis film oan tonight-'Change Of Habit'-it's the start o' a new series-he's no a bad actor at a' and seems tae have been in an incredible number o' films considering he's a singer. 

He looks amazing-a picture o' health 'n handsomeness! The films are always entertaining as well as featuring some guid music-'Have A Happy'; a wee gospel number in the kirk; "Let Us Pray'; as well as the title track-just the tonic oan a late summer's evening.

Monday, 22 August 2016

Monday, 23rd August, 1971

Remember to switch on the gas.

Wie Maw 'n John away tae Pompey and us a' staying at Nana and Gaga's this week, it feels a bit like we're oan holiday-even going tae school seems like an adventure. 

I had a very guid breakfast-porridge 'n cream wie brown sugar, followed by toast 'n bacon-just a wee bit different from life at Oxgangs!

Gaga ran Anne, Iain and me oot tae Oxgangs tae allow us a' tae go to oor separate schools-Anne tae Hunters Tryst; Iain tae Firhill; and me tae Boroughmuir. Quite guid in its way us a' splittin' up and then coming back together late afternoon.

School is fine-so far; actually it wisnae a bad day at a'. Following oan from 3rd Year, we had another guid laugh in Miss Boyd's Biology class. 

After school I just took the number 45 bus down tae Porty, whereas Gaga collected Anne 'n Iain from Oxgangs at tea-time. 

After oor tea I had some melon-I dinnae think they sell them in Oxgangs(!)-quite exotic and very refreshing; Nana collects the colourful stickers peeling them aff the melon and then sticking them oan the hatch serving platform, making fir a colourful display-artist at work!

The three o' us didnae bother watching telly this evening, but had some guid fun playing 'n talking oot in the back garden. 

A wee bit o' supper-another change from oor Oxgangs lifestyle then aff tae bed-Iain 'n I are sleeping in the living room.