Published: April 12, 2005

Pipe dreams

For the past few days I’ve had similar dreams about piping. They aren’t exactly nightmares, but they have been quite¬†exciting.

The common thread in them is that I am at a solo piping contest. It’s some sort of highfalutin invitational event where everyone is supposed to play to some great standard. The extra dimension in each dream is that I don’t know any of the tunes that I have submitted. I don’t even have a clue as to how they go, and I’m sweating trying to figure out what to do before I have to play.

The contest episodes are preceded and followed by lots of adventures in Scottish-types of places. Last night I was riding a bike through what seemed to be a cliff-side sheep-track on a Hebridean island. I never actually fell, but there was always the threat of disaster — sort of like the not-knowing-any-of-the-tunes situation.

To add to that, Neil Mulvie was in it. I haven’t seen Neil for a few years now, but in the last dream he was really fulfilling his usual dignified educated gentleman role. But, then again, I seem to recall him trying to knock me off of my bike.

Hugh MacCallum called having to learn the set tunes year after year “the treadmill.” Maybe it’s more like trying to ride a bike along a sheep-track on the side of a cliff with someone constantly threatening to push you over the edge.

Any Freudians out there?

 

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