Cathy's gripe seems to have led us solidly down the 'how we feel about it'
lane. Last night I was reminded of an experience I had in Scotland a couple
of years ago - which apply to an American't not-so-hot behavior in Scotland.
A few years ago, on my second trip to Scotland (it still felt very new),
I had the amazing good fortune to be invited to a ceilidh at Sheila Douglases'
house, with Duncan Williamson, Belle Stewart, Willy MacFee, etc... The
room was alive with future memories. However, sitting on the coffee table
smack in the center of the room was an American girl - a fiddler (good one,
too) who had just arrived from Ireland. Duncan was leading the evening -
telling each person in turn "tell us a story, sing us a song... drop your
drawers or out ye gang"... Scary for someone like me, but Fun! Well...
this American girl kept butting in with her long fiddle solos --- She couldn't
wait for her chance to show off. It was truly embarrassing -- At one point,
Belle Stewart kindly told her to stop. Imagine!!! Anyway, that kind of
behavior could of course have been done by anyone --- I guess. Unfortunately,
it seemed altogether too American at the time.
Sorry for another horror story. Perhaps we have some responsibility to
represent Americans in the way we'd like to be known. And having said
that - I'd also like to say that it was that particular girl who was being
judged by the Scottish people in the room ... not Americans. Well... not
me, so far as I could tell. I wonder whatever happened to that girl.