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This past weekend, Erik, Hannah and I decided that it was time to revisit Scotland.  However, being short of the funds necessary to make the epic trek across the ocean, we happened upon the happy notion of attending the Richmond Highland Games where we could enjoy all the best parts of Scotland right in our back yard, so to speak.

Okay, maybe Richmond is significantly lacking in castles, the accents are primarily fake, the food is of highly questionable authenticity (real Scottish funnel cake, anyone?), and there are an unaccountably large number of individuals who think that “Highland Games” means “Dress Up Like Magical Fantasy Warrior Queen Festival.”

However, we enjoyed ourselves nonetheless.

After all, what is more Scottish than a parade of Scottish clans?  Hannah was particularly taken with the presence of the man with the Shiny Golden Stick of Destiny leading the band.

The clans were a motley assembly of individuals with banners displaying their heritage.  One of the clans even boasted a Storm Trooper. We all thought they were clones, but what they were really saying was  clans.  It all makes sense now.  (Actually, it still doesn’t because most of what I know about Star Wars is the result of a little brother who spent a couple of obsessed years watching all six films ad nauseum and I still don’t know what I saw).



It was very strange wandering through the tents of “Scottish” merchandise.  I remember going to this event a few years back and wondering what it would be like to go to Scotland for real.  I lived on the Royal Mile for a year and the tents of merchandise that continually line the Royal Mile always reminded me of the Richmond Highland Games.  Now, having returned to the States, attending the Richmond Highland Games and seeing this tents kept reminding me of of the Royal Mile (sans the big old buildings, of course).  There was even the incessant keening of bagpipes rendering the Last of the Mohicans theme song with the gusto of a piper who is happily unaware that his song has absolutely nothing to do with Scotland.

There were many hats.  Many hats, indeed.

Mostly, though, we kept returning to the food booths and sampling such authentic delights as fish and chips, corned beef and cabbage, and Irish stew (and, of course, funnel cake).  

The weather was expansively blue and glorious, which was not authentic at all.  But of that, I could not find it in myself to complain even a little.