Saturday, April 22, 2006

The Sheep Heid, Duddingston

I was away in Dublin for a couple of days on work - hence no posting. Well there might have been posting in principle, except my laptop has been taken away to the laptop hospital, so mobile computing is somewhat difficult at present. But...I can still go to pubs. BondBloke and I trekked to the Sheep Heid in Duddingston, taking the direct route from Leith, through Pilrig Park, up Easter Road, and over Arthur's Seat. We were definitely ready for a couple of pints when we got there.

Now, the Sheep Heid is hardly in need of more lavish praise from the likes of us. It gets enough anyway, along the lines of "little gem in the city", "wonderful little pub hidden away behind Arthur's Seat", and "no smoking in the bar long before the law came in" (well, some time last year actually). But praise it none the less I shall. We go there four or five times a year, I guess, at the weekend, or on a holiday when we take a long walk over the Seat, and we wind up round the back needing a pint some time in the afternoon. The atmosphere is always relaxed and friendly, the beer whether the various guest beers, or the pub's own "Sheep Heid" is excellent, and the staff are really really helpful. It's comfortable, with open fires, a restaurant upstairs which we have never visited, a barbecue out the back in the summer, games for the winter such as scrabble and a skittle alley, which was being invaded by sixty cyclists in bizarre yellow jackets as we left this afternoon. Yes, folks, there were sixty bikes in the Sheep Heid car park at about 3pm, and none of them appeared to be locked. I wonder if the local bikes thieves in some of the dodgier estates around about clocked that. I'd also like to point out the excellent "Sheep Heid" innovation of the "Quote of the Day". See for yourself on the left.

Finally, in keeping with RoadRunner's excellent innovation of offering an anecdote to go with the pub we visit, here is mine on the Sheep Heid. Please remember that when it happened, we had only recently arrived in Edinburgh and I was not at all used to the cadences or spelling of Scots. However, I was (and am) a careful student of guidebooks, and it came to my attention that there was a really highly rated pub round the back of Arthur's Seat that we could walk to, which was called - as I pronounced it - the "Sheep's Hide". How was I to know that you pronounce Heid as "heed" and that it means "yer 'ed" not "yer skin"? Anyway, BB was keen to try out this hostlery (as always), although he thought this a very rum name for a pub, so he did. So off we went. And when we came round the corner and saw the sign, he started laughing and has rarely stopped since. Since that time, he has never missed an opportunity to ridicule my Scots prononciation of a pub that is, of course I now know, simply the Scottish equivalent of the good old English "Sheep's Head".


Blogger mądry said...

You pronounced it as thoug it were German- if it had been hied you would have pronounced it correctly

Saturday, April 22, 2006  
Blogger BondWoman said...

well it's also me forgetting the anglo-saxon roots of scots. how could i?

Monday, April 24, 2006  

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