Tuesday, 7 July 2009
Some smart alec (me) decided that the Claw, having a Scottish look, with its Cairngorm-y stone and hint of kilt-pin about it, might find its spiritual home in Scotland, and in particular, Edinburgh's Royal Mile, with its vast array of souvenir shops and tartan-influenced paraphenalia. And its well-heeled connections to Scotland's grouse moors.
So I asked brother in law John to join the mission to restore the Claw to its rightful state of perfect gruesomeness. John originates from Edinburgh, and is thus entitled by birth, which I am not, to mock its tourist-trap shops, and to label them Granny's Hielan' Hame; moreover, he was happy to use his newly-earned pensioner's travel pass to travel from Glasgow and tramp the cobbled streets of his home town in our service, brandishing the mutilated Claw with its stump of a toe, and striving not to look or indeed feel embarrassed about it.
But the Edinburgh jewellers also threw up their hands in defeat. No one wants claw-like grouse feet any more; fluffy feathery Disney paws, perhaps, but not something that looked like it might rip out your windpipe in the middle of the night. And no one cured grouse feet any more; not a trade to attract the young.
But then, miles of cobbles having been tramped, hundred of tartan ornaments having crowded in on him in cramped little shops, John struck lucky. The ancient Mr D would ask his contemporaries about obtaining a replacement claw; perhaps amongst the dying breed of old-time jewellers, someone still knew of a wee Hielan' craftsman's cottage where grouse could come to have their feet cured. If a replacement could be found, Mr D would restore the brooch. He was scathing about the fluffy Disney version; a man after our own hearts. The Claw was handed over, and all went silent.
For about two years.
Posted by rachel at 14:14