Story Telling at the games 2018

“There is not a stream or a rock that does not have its story” 

                                                            Stuart McHardy

 ……………So says the author in a collection of Scottish stories compiled by Stuart McHardy called Scotland the Brave Land,  10,000 Years of Scotland in Story.   In the forward written by storyteller, Donald Smith, he explains that just as there are strata of time, history and geological formations, storytelling, reflecting the land so steeped in history as Scotland is, can have strata too.  The oldest layer or category of stories tells how mountains and lochs were created by powerful acts of gods and goddesses.  The next layer is the stories of heroes in Scottish history, (Wallace, Bruce and knights,) who fought selflessly for freedom and independence.  These stories have been told and retold for centuries and have preserved Scottish history with awe.  Layer upon layer leads to stories that tell of Scotland’s inventor’s and innovator’s creative spirit.  There is a layer of folktales that glorify the character of her people, their daily lives and the influence of the sea.    (Scotland is surrounded on three sides by the sea and the fourth side is separated by mountains and deep lochs that cut the country into different cultural divisions.)  The common people are a melding of all the influences and events that have resulted from invasions of the Picts, the Norse, English, French, et al, who landed on Scotland’s shores. They all added their dealings, chicanery, their ghosts or magicians to create the Scottish character of the common people.    Our repetition of those ancient stories is entertaining and that keeps the Scottish character and traditions alive. 

Entertainment is still the leading factor in today’s re-growth of popularity of storytelling, because people love to talk.  Isn’t that great?   Sit down and talk.  In keeping with this surge of interest, Mary Finney brings you her magic, ghosts, heroes and legends in her Scottish tales.   

Mary Finny is a stable feature of Athena Caledonian Games, as she has shared Scottish stories for many years.  She is Executive Director of the Pendleton Public Library and a musician.    It is a good mix.  

Nicholas Seltmann