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Relaxing Oaty Drink

The Scots are reputed to be frugal and thrifty, if not down-right mean – especially Aberdonians! It is, of course, not true, as a people we are merely canny and good at spotting a bargain, especially a FREE bargain. With greater interest in St Andrew’s Day there has grown up the tradition of normally paid attractions such as the Castles at Edinburgh, Stirling and St Andrews having free entry on 30 November. The coming St Andrew’s Day (30 November 2007) will be first that workers can have as a National Holiday (if swopped for another day) and there will be an even wider range of attractions which will have free entry. With some 50 attractions across Scotland opening their doors at no cost a visit to is essential to find a FREE attraction near you. When Culture Minister Linda Fabiani announced this move on 12 November 2007, she rightly said –

“St Andrew’s Day is a day to celebrate Scotland. We have a proud history, a rich cultural fabric and a fantastic-built heritage. It belongs to us all.”

Indeed it does and she made the announcement in one of the free attractions - Edinburgh’s Royal College of Surgeons which is a fascinating building to visit. The Surgeon’s Hall Museum is particularly worth a visit as it not only traces Scotland’s immense contribution to modern medicine, but highlights many connections with popular culture. For example, the fact that the Edinburgh-born writer Sir Arthur Conan Doyle based his great detective, Sherlock Holmes, on his university lecturer, the surgeon Joseph Bell.

With St Andrew’s Day now being the starting point of a new Winter Festival running to the birth-date of our National Bard, Robert Burns, hopefully Scots at home will celebrate the event with the passion of those in exile.

Continuing our recent oatmeal theme, the staple diet of Scots in days langsyne, this week’s recipe – Relaxing Oaty Drink – offers a warming and relaxing drink with an oatmeal base. But be warned although warm and relaxing, this drink is also stimulating!

Relaxing Oaty Drink

Ingredients:  200 ml water; 10 ml oatmeal; 2.5 ml brown sugar; 2.5 ml lemon juice; 1.25 ml ground ginger

Method:  Put the oatmeal, sugar and ginger into a mug or small jug. Mix with 15 ml of cold water taken from the 200 ml. Add the lemon juice. Boil the water and add to the mixture, stirring well until all is blended. The amounts of ginger and sugar may be varied according to taste.

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