Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Capris to Kilts

Last weekend my dear friend Katy came to visit me, ie help her grandma at the Highland Games in Phoenix.  I'm not sure what I expected my first Scottish festival to be like, but IT. WAS. AWESOME.  This may be due, in part, to the fact that I have done very few things in AZ for my own pure enjoyment.  Working in addition to my internship and taking classes has put a damper on my free spirit, so it was awesome to just relax.

There are a few essential parts to a ligit Highland games:

1. Representing your Clan
Katy is Clan Rose, and I therefore, also consider myself Clan Rose.  They are awesome.

2. Tartan
There are something like 5000 different clan tartan patterns.  That's just crazy.

3. Bag Pipes
They are not as loud as one might think, but their sound carries FOR-E-VER.  There were about 4 different groups and they were all good as far as I'm concerned.  AND, Katy bought a canter, the part of the pipe your fingers go on to make notes.  She will become an expert shortly.

4. And more bag pipes

5. Yummy Food
Go to the longest line with the most kilts and the food WILL be good.  We were rewarded with meat pies.

6. Caber Tossing
This was our favorite part.  They basically pick up this HUGE log, balance it for a while, and then attempt to toss it so it rotates in the air vertically and lands in a perfectly straight line.  If you don't get it all the way around, your score is measured in degrees, representing the highest angle your achieved.  If you do, your score is measured by the way it lands.  A perfect toss is a 12 o'clock.

This caber, Stewart Travel, was the big kahuna.  It was something like 18' 6" and 130 pounds.  Apparently, it has been around for 5 years and has never been tossed.  There is $300 prize for the first man who tosses it and the cash keeps accumulating from year to year until someone does.

This guy was in the light weight competition.  Not bad.  He turned it, but didn't get it to land straight.  

7. Throwing Other Heavy Things
This has to be dangerous.  They basically toss this VERY heavy weight directly over their heads and try to get it over the high bar.  I'm pretty sure that hiking up your kilt is essential to a good toss.

8. Good Friends

If you want to jump on the Scottish band wagon, might I suggest:


  1. So jealous! I'm glad you had fun...and met all my relatives.

  2. You are so welcome to our clan!!

  3. Karen, thanks for the official invite! And I wish you both were there. We had fun, but just imagine how fun it would be with the whole family. I'm picturing Ruby in tartan and it is CUTE!

  4. H yes girlfriend!!! I had the time of my life and I am glad to see this proof that you did too! :)

  5. Thanks for all the pics of your weekend! Katy told me how awesome it was that you came both days-super nice of you:)