Among other things this is about trams so if you live in Edinburgh you may want to look away now. The above is a pic of a tram which sells stovies. And not a lot of trams do that but we have one in Dundee! Stovies of course are a Scots delicacy with varying ingredients. The basics are potato meat of some kind and onions or possibly carrot. The Scots word ‘stovie” is thought to derive from the French word ‘etuvee’ meaning ‘steamed’ and as you probably know Scotland and France had an Auld Alliance for years. It was in their mutual interests as they bookended England whose citizenry had sort of set up camp between Hadrian’s Wall and the English Channel. La Manche.
The stovies the tram sells in Dundee are damn fine I can tell you but in order to do this it has to stand still. Which is not too much of a problem since trams last ran in Dundee in 1956. Shortly before this happened I was taken on a tram as a four year old by my parents. On the bench seat opposite was a soldier wearing a kilt and in my already megaphone voice I turned to my parents and asked why the man was wearing a skirt since his bum would be cold? Now there’s probably a sexist assumption in there but I was barely four. Just as the soldier was barely amused and my parents’ faces were more than barely warm. Maybe if they’d had a plate of stovies to feed me it would have shut me up in advance but as I say this tram was moving.
At the other side of Commercial Street in Dundee from the stovies tram is Murraygate where there are still tram tracks. If only Edinburgh had thought of that. In other words leave them there because you never know when they might come in handy. It’s called the ‘up in the attic’ principle allowing future recycling. Which is the principle behind stovies – make use of leftovers. When we go down to Edinburgh later this year I’m planning to go for a ride on a tram. I don’t expect stovies but might well suggest it as an idea if they’re looking for customer feedback. Then again I gather they’ve had quite a bit of that already from the citizens of Edinburgh re trams. I know – offer them free stovies- that’ll keep them quiet!
Oh and there was a recent proposal to re-introduce er……..moving trams to Dundee as part of the Waterfront Development V&A etc. The Council squashed it this time with a big Monty Python style foot but you never know. I mean we already have one tram and some rails. And fabulous stovies! Watch this space.