Saturday 7 April 2012: Hamish's 100th
This afternoon I was at the 100th birthday celebrations of local farmer Hamish Mackellar. The family asked me to present him with his telegram from the Queen , but not just because I am his local MSP nor even as an ex "Herald" writer, for Hamish has read the "Herald" almost every day since he was old enough to do so , a fact celebrated in the paper's letter column yesterday.
My closest connection to him is actually that Hamish was born in Feorlean, the house in which we have now lived in for 20 years. He left it in 1918 (when he was 6) to move across the loch to Shellfield Farm, where his father was tenant and of which he also had the tenacy for many years. Then one of his son's (another Hamish) ran it and in the last month or so it has been taken over by his grandson. Hamish now lives in the Abbeyfield Home in Kames., where today's very well attended party was held.
About 15 years ago he told me the story of his move from Feorlean - everything was carried down to the shore below the house, and put in a boat which sailed the short distance across to Shellfield. There the family's posessions were carried up from the shore to the farm. He remembered the great excitement of the move for him as a child just as he still remembers almost everything of his life.
He greeted me today by asking if I had slept well last night in the bed in which he was born - I had to admit to him that whilst the room was the same one, the bed was long gone !