|last morning of November|
Yesterday, we had some business to attend to in Loches, and as it was also market day we went up in the morning. As we drove along the mist began to thin and there was the promise of sun later on. The small camera now mostly lives in the car so we took a few photos.
30 November is the feast of St Andrew, the patron saint of Scotland. Before devolution it was a day when official buildings in Scotland would fly the Saltire Cross -- the Scottish flag, instead of the Union Jack. Now of course the Scottish flag is flown everywhere.
|welcome to Loches|
Often in expat communities more is made of events such as St Andrew's day than would be the case in the home country. We can remember, when living in Wassenaar, being enthusiastically cornered by a lady very keen on signing anyone, with even the most tenuous connection to Scotland, up for a St Andrew's Day ball. It took some dexterity on our part to manoeuvre elegantly out of that one. We were informed that kilts were mandatory and that counted Niall out. He has a clan tartan but having worn a kilt once to a highland wedding swore never again. Not even at our own wedding.
Loches is alliée, associated with, the University town of St Andrews in Fife. It's nice that a town close to us has this link with not only Scotland, but a place we know well as we have good friends who live there. And... yes, it is the place where the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge met, as well as the historic home of golf. A couple of months ago Loches held a 'Scotland Week' and along with holding events festooned the central streets with Scottish bunting; Saltire Crosses to the fore!
|St Andrew with Saltire Cross|
Legend has it that Rule, "an obscure Scottish saint" [Oxford Dictionary of Saints]; brought the relics, or at least some of them, to Scotland. He landed in Fife and built a church on the site of what is now the town of St Andrews. It became a center of pilgrimage and hence led to the selection of St Andrew as the patron saint of Scotland.
In early depictions St Andrew is shown with a normal cross. The X, or Saltire Cross, now associated with him first appears in the 10thC in Autun [SW of Dijon] and becomes common by the 14thC.