This morning I kicked off the day the way I meant to go on – by crawling all the way inside our blue recycling bin, to retrieve the letter I had intended to post in the usual fashion (in a post box) but had, instead, just tossed merrily in the trash, along with the handful of other rubbish I happened to be carrying at the time:

A load of old rubbish
A load of old rubbish

(I had to crawl allthe way in. It may be a bin for paper and stuff, but it still sucked, let me tell you.  Also: those are my spechul dog-walking shoes, by the way. Please don’t judge me too harshly)

Now, I know what you’re thinking. You’re all, “FAKE! FAKRZ! It’s totally fake, because why would she just happen to have someone with a camera with her when she crawled inside the trash? YOU SUCK. ” You are wrong, though. Well, sort of: I mean, I do suck, but not in the “taking fake photos way” you’re thinking. The photo, you see, was taken by Terry, and we had a camera with us as we headed out to walk the dog this morning so I could take a picture of this:

Bandit Country
Bandit Country

Yup, this is where we’re livin’ folks: BANDIT COUNTRY. And you thought all of those “In the Ghetto” posts were just a joke, didn’t you?  This bridge marks the entrance to our part of town – a.k.a. “BANDIT COUNTRY” – which I guess makes Terry and I… BANDITS.  Yes, bandits.*

(The “cool” thing to do in Bandit Country, by the way, is to hang out underneath that bridge, listening to tinny music from one of those crappy MP3 payers that have speakers (And that are BANNED under my rule.) while rocking back and forth in the foetal position.  There ain’t no party like a bandit party, that’s for sure!)

Other things spotted this morning here in Bandit Country:

Exhibit A: A huge heap o’rubbish:

rubbish: heap o'
rubbish: heap o

Interestingly, this rubbish wasn’t located particularly close to any houses, but was in the “forest”, which means that someone must have gone to quite a bit of trouble to dump it there. WHY? Why do people do stuff like this? Do they not realise that the council will come and collect this stuff from your door if you just place it inside your rubbish bin? Why has no one shot them yet?

Exhibit B: Empty can of ‘White Star’

White Star, can of
White Star, can of

I have no idea what type of alcohol “White Star” actually is, but I’m guessing either cider or cheap lager. We spotted five of these cans in the space of about two minutes, though. Looks like someone was thirsty!

Exhibit C: Half naked man

Now, I didn’t get a photo of this unfortunately – or “fortunately”, depending on your point of view – and I actually saw the half-naked man on Monday, anyway.  You see, on Monday,  it stopped raining for a couple of hours. You probably heard about it on the news or something. During this brief dry spell, the sun came out,  and it was briefly what you could call “fairly warm-ish”. It was still Scotland, though, and it was still September, so when I say “warm” I mean “well, it wasn’t freezing“.

Try telling that to the half-naked man, though, who was hanging out with his (fully clothed) friends outside the Ghetto Superstore (another Bandit Country pastime), wearing nothing but a pair of shorts and his shoes. His chest and legs were bare (when I first noticed him, he was standing behind some shrubs and was only visible from the waist up, so I thought he was actually COMPLETELY naked. Seriously, nothing would surprise me any more.) and he didn’t appear to be carrying a sweater or jacket of any kind, so I can only assume he had actually left the house (un)dressed like that. Yeah.

Actually, that’s not even particularly unusual around here. I think the thing about Scottish people is that we’re just so unused to sunshine and warmth (because we don’t get much of either) that we have come to believe the two to be inseparable. And so it is that even if there’s frost on the ground in December, if the sun is shining you will see Scottish people out baring their pale blue skin to the elements and trying to walk nonchalantly along in nothing but jeans and a thin t-shirt, accessorised with armfuls of goosebumps and a frozen expression. Coats are, like, seriously uncool around here. If you want to fit in round Bandit Country way, you freeze your ass off and like it. Honestly, coats are for the pansies over in Oultlaw Land, on the other side of the bridge.

We are SO moving, first chance we get.

*Rubin, on the other hand, has pretty much always been a bandit. And proud to be one…

  1. I feel incredibly grateful that I live somewhere populated (seemingly) entirely with old ladies who glare at people for dropping litter, and being loud, and also being young. They're like the Mafia. No banditos here 😛

  2. I used to live in somewhere like Bandit country, but the Bandit Underpass was the Shops right outside out front door. I saw things there that would make you shudder. I tried taking it up with said Bandito's mothers but was told in no uncertain terms where I could put my concerns.Problems to speak of these days.

    1. Oh, there's no point in trying to speak to Bandito Mothers – their kids can Do No Wrong, you see. And they'll kill you if you look at 'em the wrong way 🙂

  3. I would have made Terry go in the bin. I thought thats what men are for? 😉

    you have inspired me to take photos of my 'lovely' 'hood. I'll post them on SFF.

        1. I havent heard anyone say that in years!!! I'm SOOOO going to have to say that to someone in the pub tonight hahah!

          these replies threads are fun

  4. Hahaha, we also have the sun = t-shirts mentality here in Vancouver, when very often sun does not = warmth. I actually didn't even think anything of it (probably had engaged in the myth myself over the years), until I met a girl who'd moved here from Texas, and she couldn't believe the climate which people here deem shorts and t-shirt worthy. I was all, "You mean that's not normal?"

    1. Yeah, I think it's probably common to all cold places. We see sunshine and it sends us a little delerious 🙂 The no-shirt thing is a strange one, though, because I am judgemental, and I tend to think that it's never really appropriate to walk around in a public street topless. Even if you're a man…

  5. So Bandit Country really exists?! I thought our solicitor was joking when he refused to let us buy a particular house because it was on the border of Bandit Country. So, instead, we bought a house in the same village that he lives in 🙂 So far, no bandits, though the bunnies are a bit ferocious. I may need to borrow your wolf.

  6. The nakedness rule applies to Newcastle too – I can remember walking around town in February in hat, gloves, scarves, wool coat, fifteen cardigans, etc, and seeing topless men wandering around. Y'know, because the sun was making a rare appearance…

    1. It's the weirdest thing, isn't it? And it doesn't even look good, either, when they're walking along shivering – you can kind of understand it when it's kids, but when I see adults doing it I always wonder why the penny hasn't dropped yet that sun doesn't necessarily equal heat!

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