St. Andrews

Recent Posts

Blue language on the greens, and a very odd coincidence


I hold a world record at golf and it’s one I’m rather proud of. It happened at the fourth hole of my local course, here on the east coast of Scotland. In the five seconds between my ball leaving the clubface and splashing into a pond 100 yards right of the fairway, I managed to swear 17 times. Apparently, this beat the previous record of 14, held by someone called Frankie “Foul-Mouth” McFadden at a course in northern Idaho. (more…) Continue Reading →

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The wearing of cowboy hats and the folly of ‘blending in’


I tried on a cowboy hat once. As a tourist from Scotland in Billings, it seemed like something I should do. It’s difficult to describe how I looked. Some time ago, I saw a George Clooney movie where he wore one of those baggy caps popular in the 1920s and the effect was pretty damned impressive, as though he was born to wear it. (more…) Continue Reading →

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A Scotsman walks into a bar…

Lay of the Land: A series of essays on the spirit of Montana
It was an evening in late May 1995. Around midnight, I got back to my room at the Northern Hotel in Billings and picked up the phone. I was desperate to talk to my wife, Mary, who was back home in Scotland, where it was 7 in the morning. The conversation went roughly as follows: (more…) Continue Reading →

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