26 Signs You Grew Up On A Scottish Island

Island life is the best life.

1. On a map, home often appears in the wrong place – in a box at the side.

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2. And home sometimes looks terrifying.

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3. You got your Sunday newspaper on a Monday (if you were lucky).

You also saw films two months after the rest of the country.

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4. People ask if you had running water or electricity when you were a kid.

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5. Or if you had to catch a boat (or row!) to the “mainland” to go to school.

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6. When you know that the mainland is the biggest island in the group and everything else is just “south”.

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7. The highlight of a trip “south” was going to McDonald’s.

Or seeing a train. Or some trees.

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8. You shake your head when you see a visitor putting up an umbrella.

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9. The smallest kids were kept inside on the windiest school playtimes.

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10. You wince when people say “the Orkneys” and “the Shetlands”.

It’s ‘Orkney’ and ‘Shetland’!

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11. You know it is summer because you have slightly unzipped your anorak.

And people start saying it’s “too hot” at 20 degrees celsius.

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12. You know to keep your distance from bonxies.

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13. You know what a “spoo”’ is.

And what walking backwards has to do with finding them.

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14. Your extended family have an annual reunion for tattie picking.

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15. At school the question wasn’t what football team you supported but which make of tractor was your favourite.

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16. Teenage fun could be found sneaking around Neolithic archaeological sites at night.

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17. Or jumping off piers.

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18. You had a “field car”.

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19. Or a pet caddy lamb.

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20. You know someone who owns a whole island.

Amy Liptrot

Although only sheep live there.

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21. You’ve been to places beyond the end of Google Maps.

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22. You were dragged outside from watching TV to see the Merry Dancers.

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23. You were never stuck in a traffic jam unless it was behind a herd of cows.

Amy Liptrot
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24. You often had a whole beach to yourself to play on.

Amy Liptrot
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25. You thought growing up in Orkney was “quite good”.

Amy Liptrot
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26. And now you’re older, you know you were right - you were lucky.

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