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Carina’s July column in The Scots Magazine

25 June 2015

Carina writes a monthly column each month for Scots Magazine. The Scots Magazine is a monthly publication packed with entertaining and informative features on Scotland’s people, places, culture and leisure. Every issue is a celebration of Scotland’s rich urban and rural life – from the great outdoors to the vibrant city scene; all complimented by stunning photography.

Childhood Treat Food!

Wednesday’s in the summer were our fun days. They were the only days we got off – even at 10! Working in an ice cream shop with your seven brothers and sisters was great fun, we were anything but hard done by, we had a ball and were paid in sweets! My brother John Mark (number 7) and I (number 8) would head into Edinburgh with Margaret, our all round fairy godmother. We never got a summer holiday abroad; Peterhead was the highlight for the October holiday. But Wednesday’s were our lottery days. We were, and still are, even at 93years old Margaret’s bairns. She spent all the wages she got from my father on us! We were spoiled rotten. Every morning under our pile of clothes (actually under our pants) we’d get 50p. When I think of it now it was a fortune. So with our 50p’s added up for our pocket money we’d head into town. Please don’t tell my children they only get £4 now. Let’s just say it was old money! If there was a new film we’d walk up to the Odeon on Clark Street. Star Wars, Superman, Indiana Jones all the greats! There was a tiny wee Italian café just along the road. Beef burger with fried onions in a bun followed by an oyster (ice cream in a wafer shell with marshmallow dipped in chocolate and coconut). Food heaven for 10 years olds. After the cinema we’d head to Jenner’s. Do you remember all those face masks that decorated the entrance as you headed down into the toy shop? It was like a trip to Disneyland just walking down the stairs! If this wasn’t enough, the big treat was still to come. Straight across the road, over to Princes Street Gardens for a round of putting and a carton of chilled pink, fresh, strawberry milk from the vending machines. The vending machines were an adventure in themselves. You never quite knew, until the very last moment if they’d just keep your 10p and the milk! I think about this almost every day when I’m working in The Scottish Cafe & Restaurant at The Scottish National Gallery. My life has changed so much but I’m surrounded by my lovely memories at every opportunity. Such happy days! We’ll I’m older, not so sure about the wiser and I still love strawberry milk but I like it just a little bit more grown up. Strawberry Amaretto Milkshake for me, on the menu at The Royal Mile Cafe. Now Margaret has never touched a drop of alcohol in her life – promise you won’t tell her I’ve slipped a wee dram in, just like the 50p, for the fun of it! Happy drinks!

Recipes to follow! Keep an eye on our blog!