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There's a fairmer up in Cairnie,
Wha's kent baith faur and wide,
Tae be the great Drumdelgie
Upon sweet Deveronside.
The fairmer o' yon muckle toun
He is baith hard and sair,
And the cauldest day that ever blaws,
His servants get their share.

At five o'clock we quickly rise
An' hurry doun the stair ;
It's there to corn our horses,
Likewise to straik their hair.
Syne, after working half-an-hour,
Each to the kitchen goes,
It's there to get our breakfast,
Which generally is brose.

We've scarcely got our brose weel supt,
And gien our pints a tie,
When the foreman cries, "Hallo my lads!
The hour is drawing nigh."
At sax o'clock the mull's put on,
To gie us a' strait wark ;
It tak's four o' us to mak' to her,
Till ye could wring our sark.

And when the water is put aff,
We hurry doun the stair,
To get some quarters through the fan
Till daylicht does appear.
When daylicht does begin to peep,
And the sky begins to clear,
The foreman cries out, "My lads!
Ye'll stay nae langer here!"

"There's sax o' you'll gae to the ploo,
And twa will drive the neeps,
And the owsen they'll be after you
Wi' strae raips roun, their queets."
But when that we were gyaun furth,
And turnin' out to yoke,
The snaw dank on sae thick and fast
That we were like to choke.

The frost had been sae very hard,
The ploo she wadna go ;
And sae our cairting days commenced
Amang the frost and snaw.
But we will sing our horses' praise,
Though they be young an' sma',
They far outshine the Broadland's anes
That gang sae full and braw.

Sae fare ye weel, Drumdelgie,
For I maun gang awa ;
Sae fare ye weel, Drumdelgie,
Your weety weather an' a',
Sae fareweel, Drumgeldie,
I bid ye a' adieu ;
I leave ye as I got ye -
A maist unceevil crew.

Footnote - This Cornister gives a vivid impression of the hardship of Scottish farming life in times past and of the pride in their horse by the horsemen. See "Scottish Food, Traditions and Customs" for a recipie for brose, the staple diet of the farmworkers. 


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