It has taken me a few days to process the 2022 Royal Highland Show; as some of you may know, my other half is involved in its organisation, so I perhaps see it slightly differently from others. For many, The Royal Highland Show starts on the third Thursday in June; in our house, it starts a year earlier!
Over the years, I have worn many hats at the Show (not just Aldi cowboy hats), school visitor, stand holder, member, guest, mum, wife – I have lived through stand building in the days before the Show, finding your marquee had been put up the wrong way round, or the graphics weren’t quite right. I have carried boxes of giveaways across the show field and queued up each morning to buy milk from the M&S stand. I have served tea and coffee to important visitors, and I have pushed a buggy around the site until my baby falls asleep, I have milked Mable the cow at RHET and emptied bins, and I have attended formal lunches and events with my husband.
Every year, no matter what hat I wear, I enjoy it, but this year felt different. Was the weather amazing? Yes! Did the new members Pavillion look unbelievable in the light of the sunset? Yes! Was there an array of inspiring events? Yes! Was it their 200th year? Yes! But these aren’t the reasons; it was different because everyone had craved this moment for three years! Everyone was thrilled to be there; thoughts of sore feet (and heads) were put to one side in a quest to see everyone, taste everything and not miss one corner of the Showground. We finally had the best of rural Scotland back in one place; we shook hands and debated, launched things and learned – and it felt bloomin’ marvellous!
My Highland Show 2022 Highlights:
-The Women In Agriculture Breakfast – a great way to kick off the Show, with excellent speakers and an inspiring group of women.
-The Service of Worship on Sunday morning, a moment of calm reflection in amongst the madness of the Show. If you haven’t been before, do consider it, it is good for the soul.
-Hosting my goddaughter Edith at her first-ever Highland Show.
-Piper Tom Henderson playing Highland Cathedral as we arrived for supper on Saturday evening.
-My first ever Show dance (very briefly) and a trip on the waltzers!
The Mini Laidlaws' Highlights:
-The Grand Parade – particularly the Herefords, after being given a rosette by the Harrisons at Moralee Herefords
-The Vikings brought to the Showground by this year’s RHASS Presidential Team.
-Roddy McLean, Head of Agriculture at RBS and Alan Laidlaw (aka Daddy) being covered in pink gunge by the young farmers! Video evidence available here.
-Being interviewed for RHS TV and showing the video to all their friends! Also available to view here.
-Learning to play Top Trumps at the Royal Bank of Scotland stand.
So my feet definitely still hurt, and I have lost my voice, but I wouldn’t have it any other way – roll on 2023 when I hope we all remember to appreciate it as much as we did this year – I hear the planning is already underway….