25 January 2011

25 January - Conversion of Paul; Robert Burns

If Saint Paul's Day be fair and clear, it doth betide a happy year;
But if it chance to snow or rain, then will be dear all kinds of grain;
If clouds or mists do dark the sky, great store of birds and beasts shall die;
And if the winds do fly aloft, then wars shall vex the kingdom oft.

Let's hope it is sunny and clear.
Today is the Feast of the Conversion of Saint Paul, the Apostle to the Gentiles - 'a perfect model of a true conversion' - as he met Our Lord on the road to Damascus.

On this day is also commemorated the birth of Robert Burns, Scotland's national poet, in 1759.

"O wad some Power the giftie gie us, to see oursels as ithers see us!"

It is called a 'second national day', but seems to be more celebrated that the first national day, Saint Andrew.  (Well, Saint Andrew does belong to other countries, like Russia and Greece, but Rabbie Burns belongs to Scots alone.)

Scotland.org has a listing of the different celebrations connected with Burn's Night, and an interactive video to meet Robert Burns and learn more about his life and times (it is good just to listen to that man talk).

See the Burns Night web-site for menus for a Burns Supper (and the protocol - including piping in the haggis - that goes with it).

A good day to celebrate with your Scots friends.  Even with your 1/32 Scots friends.  Even with friends who haven't a drop of Scottish blood in them, but love to listen to the pipes and drums.  Oh, heck, just break out the Scotch and celebrate!