Today’s reason for liking Scotland are the Glaswegians. There might be a serious lack of sunshine in Scotland but the Glaswegians don’t need it anyway as they have sunshine in their hearts. They are the most outgoing and cheerful people in the world. They are sweet. Every time I am in Glasgow I am chatted up by somebody who simply is interested in learning about me. This is exactly what we do in Poland.
When I first moved away from Poland for London, I found it quite frustrating how people ran a converstion. It was very superficial, like they were asking questions but were not interested in answers. This British ‘how are you?’ without waiting for a reply is quite shocking for a foreigner. Where I come from when we ask ‘how are you?’ we do expect you to tell us not only about all your medical conditions which prevent you from being happy but we do wait to hear about all your darkest secrets.
Before I have moved to Scotland I was convinced that everywhere in Britian all that your interlocutor wants to hear from you after asking you ‘how are you?’ is ‘fine’. Anything more than ‘fine’ is not invited and will not be heard anyway.
But Glasgow is different. The Glaswegians are indeed interested in you.
Yesterday in the Costa cafe in the center of Glasgow I met a lovely young man. Just as I was paying for a ridiculous amount of coffees and teas (for all my colleagues), somebody said:
-Oh, so you are paying today. I’ll get one flat white please.
-Hmm, where I come from it is always a man who pays – I reacted immediately.
-Haha, and from where I come from the women pay – he said.
Then of course he questioned whether I was to drink 4 coffees and 2 teas on my own to which I replied that I have had a wee drinking problem for some time now.
John (as I learned) had a very interesting mix of talents as he was a chef and a public speaking coach in one. I told him what I was doing for living.
John was so easy to talk to and we liked one another instantly. This is what I love about humankind, this is what I like about Glaswegians. They are approachable, warm and real. They are as they are, no need for acting.
I told John I preferred Glasgow to Edinburgh as the people of Edinburgh keep themselves to themselves a lot. John said: ‘To me Edinburgh is like a fallen cat walk model which used to be fabulous, has not been for a long time now now but still behaves like one’.
Ha, I couldn’t have put it more aptly.