Joey Anderson,  Netta & Davy Arthur                                 SA1980.05.3

When Joey and Nettie sang this dialect song at local concerts and in other isles – for example at annual regatta concerts and for fund-raising or O.A.P. entertainments – they dressed up as crofting women.   Despite the theme of the song and the fact  that 1980 was a leap year, it’s worth mentioning that both singers were married!    After the first two lines, they sing generally alternately with Joey leading off.  Nettie’s husband,  Davy,  gives support on the guitar.  Recorded at a homely ‘ceilidh’  on January 10, 1980.  Roud Index no. 25913.

Nae place we ever fan like hame; for ‘oors on end we‘re sat     [hours]
Contented wi’ a scar a ‘oo ta caird an spin an mak.      [little wool]      [knit]
But I need ane fornenst me  I’ da idder shimbley sheek,    [opposite]    [other side of the fire]
Ta sook upon a grüty pipe      She loves tabacca reek.   [dirty]

Noo I wid see he wis no caald, if him I only hed
For fae his feet right til his heid in swaara he’d be cled   [thick home-spun wool]
I’m easy pleased, nae jaunts for me it a’ dis fancy cars
I just love washin’ sweaty socks an’ reppin hole-y drawers     [mending]

We never geen ower far fae hame; we never lik ta roam.
We aye keep lippening aa da time, ‘at some man wid a’ come    [expecting]
Wi’ sheep an’ kye an’ at da sty I’m tocht a braw guid haand;
An’ I wid see he widna fant  wi reestit flesh an’ blaand.     [go hungry[  [smoked]  [whey]

Weel, I can mak a diet o’ maet as weel as ony een!
A’ll mak a liver muggy ‘ats fit fur ony king        [cod liver boiled in a fish stomach]
I hae a gret big rowling pin if him I only hed
Me grettest wiss is fur a man ta try him on his heid.

When I wis sooth, then croods a boys aye followed me aroond
Dy personality wis likely caain dem asoond       [knocking them senseless]
But if I could only get just oonly wan ta caa me his sweet lamb
Hmph!  Hit wis no’ an M.A. she wis efter, hit wis a M – A – N!

Ae nicht whin kerryin muck upo da rig ‘at’s oot be wast,     [that’s out to the west]
I spie ita a trowie gait, gyaain brawly fast,            [fairy path]   [going very]
A lovely man lik ‘Desperate Dan’ wi a hat upon his heid.
He cam right up ta whaur I stude an dis is whit he said.

“I want with you an interview but I’ll give you a ring”,
She fell dat pooerless ‘at she niver heard anidder thing.
Bit someteen telt me for ta mak an answer tae love’s call
So  I sprang right up athin his skurt  wi kishie, muck and all.  [arms and body]

So we canno lat da leap-year pass: we must try aa we can
By hook or crook tat get a haud ‘a some kin o’ a man.
Dir plenty a’ middle-aged men around some o them is turning baald,
But we’ll grab ane noo while we hae da chance afore dey turn ower auld.