Sunday, November 30

Happy St. Andrew's Day

St. Andrew, patron saint of Scotland.

The Saltire became the national flag of Scotland in the year 832 C.E. On this occasion the Scots were the visiting team as East Lothian was part of the kingdom of Northumbria. On the eve of the battle, King Angus, who was leading the Scots and Picts, is reported to have had a vision in which Saint Andrew appeared to him, and assured him victory would be his. (Visions are not uncommon in Scotland. I had a couple myself. By chance, they occurred around the same time we were sampling some of the better adult beverages that Scotland has to offer.)

Arriving at the battlefield the next day, the Scots and Picts were heavily outnumbered, and Angus and the Scots army knelt down to pray to St Andrew, vowing that if he emerged victorious, Andrew would be ourpatron saint and his cross would become the national flag of Scotland  As the forces of Scotland and England faced each other to commence battle, a strange thing happened. (Yeah, right.) White clouds formed the shape of a diagonal cross, set against the background of the light blue sky. (According to the myth, Andrew was martyred by being bound to a diagonal cross at Petra, in what is now Greece.)

Modern saltire in the sky, created by UFOs, august 2008, Oban, Argyll, Scotland

Inspired, the Scots went on to victory when the English leader Aethelstan was killed and the Northumbrians fled. From that time the Saltire became the flag of Scotland, and Scottish soldiers wore the Saltire on their bonnets and tunics for identification on the battlefield. In the kirk yard of Athelstaneford Parish Kirk there is a memorial marking the ‘Battle of the Saltire’ depicting the battlefield, the two armies and the sky above them.

So let me get this straight. King Angus sees what are obviously contrails in the Scottish sky in the ninth century C.E. and all we get from it is the Scottish flag and a bank holiday? Man, this is HUGE news. This is evidence (well, evidence is a pretty strong word for apocrypha of this magnitude) for UFOs. Admittedly, as a skeptic, I had previously found nothing to support even the simplest claims of other-worldy visitors, but now I'm convinced.

To celebrate the battlefield intervention by the ancient extraterrestrials, Scots feast on haggis and whisky, though U.S. Scots feast on haggis-substitute. The whisky is still good, though.

Happy Saint Andrew's day to all the sons and daughters of Scotland. 

"Slainte Mhath" spake the rabbit.

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