A Wee Bit o’ Scotland in the Land of Sunshine
A Caber is a very long, tapered log . They “vary greatly in length, weight, taper, and balance, all of which affect the degree of difficulty in making a successful toss. Competitors are judged on how closely their throws approximate the ideal 12 o’clock toss on an imaginary clock.” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Highland_games.
Last weekend I attend my first ever Highland games. Oddly enough (or not) these games took place in Northeastern Florida. Nothing about Florida is ‘high’ in any way. However, the distribution of Scots throughout the world is tremendous. Scots have always numbered high among the rovers of the world, and the equally large number of Highland Games held throughout the world confirms this.
Wikapedia’s entry on Highland Games states that, “the origin of human games and sports predates recorded history. . . It is reported in numerous Highland games programs, that King Malcolm III of Scotland, in the 11th century, summoned contestants to a foot race to the summit of Craig Choinnich (overlooking Braemar). King Malcolm created this foot race in order to find the fastest runner in the land to be his royal messenger. Some have seen this apocryphal event to be the origin of today’s modern Highland games. . . . However, the modern Highland games are largely a Victorian invention, developed after the Highland Clearances.”
I enjoyed this event very much from the re-en-actors to the dancers, the clan displays to the plaids and bonnets. But like a large number of people I was fascinated by the Pipers and thrilled by the Pipe and Drum competitions. I took a few pictures (see below), but I will spare you the multiple images of the various Pipe and Drum corps marching to and fro. If you have a Highland Games in your area, please attend. The clan members and other participants are very kind to visitors. I intend to go again as soon as I may.