Friday, 24 May 2013

In a beautiful country

We drove up to the Highlands yesterday, on a glorious sunny day. It was fantastic to get a tour of this beautiful country, and to have a day without rain to see it. I know, Scotland isn't a big country in terms of area. Australian and American types must think it's tiny (and may indeed conflate it with England). Scotland is a little country with beauty like this, which makes the world seem bigger and better.
Scotland is a little country with poverty, drink problems, health problems, a lot of rain and council houses, and a great attitude.
Scotland exports smart people, funny people, and people with big ideas. It keeps some too, but not enough yet imho. Scotland is a country with lots of big ideas.
Scotland's main big idea at the moment is to break away from the union. They say the Tories in London don't represent them, and they're right. They say they could do better without the Union, and they might be right there, I don't know.
But just as Scotland isn't just beautiful scenery, that inspires stories of fearsome princesses and monsters, and it isn't just junkies in Leith (or Civil Servants in Leith either), or shopping in Glasgow, or Edinburgh festival, or neds drinking Bucky; the Union isn't just with London. The Tories don't represent more than half of the people who could be bothered to vote, but they'll have even greater power in England and Wales if Scotland leaves.
I'm only Scottish by marriage, and to many Scots that doesn't count. By birth I am Yorkshire (so I'm used to incredibly beautiful places), and I'm begging you Scotland, please don't leave the Union... But, if you must, could you maybe take the North of England with you?
What do you think about Scottish independence? English types, if you could vote, what would you choose? English Northerners, if you could pick a country to join would you stay English or join the Scots? What are you thinking?