Document 876

Correspondence from Canada: Letter 28 - 25.01.82

Author(s): 852

Copyright holder(s): Name withheld


Harriet Irving Library
25th Jan. '82


Dear Mum & Dad,

Burns night and still no offers! I must say, I'm disappointed... I'd learned up all of "Tam o' Shanter" just in case! I'm writing between classes in the library, having just finished an American Poetry seminar on James Dickey (also author of "Deliverance", novel & film) which I was presenting. The seminar has taken up most of my excess time over the last week, and is the main reason I didn't write over the weekend, as usual. So now it's over - thank goodness! - it's the last one I've to give for that class. It went well, despite the fact that I didn't like the poems and no-one laughed at my jokes. In fact Prof. [CENSORED: surname]'s invited me to a party at his house on Friday evening, so I can't be irritating him badly. Maybe because I'm Scottish and he boasts Scots ancestry ... my accent's opened more doors for me!

Anyway, after 3 hours of continuous talk I'm about ready to fall asleep, not go to another 3 hours of Shakespeare this evening. Mind you, that can be entertaining - last week Prof. [CENSORED: surname] just played Elizabethan songs for a couple of hours, which was fine except for the fact that it was about -35°C outside (-50° with wind chill) and I'd a considerable walk down the hill at 11 o'clock. Thank God I'm not paying in full for the education they give here!

Yes, last week it was cold. Aunt Mary's sweater came out and I christened my long johns. The sweater is lovely & warm, and lots of folk have remarked on it: "Noo sweater, [CENSORED: forename]? Nice, eh. Gettit fuh Christmus?"

I gave blood last week and ran into a minor problem - a massive bruise developed on my arm and I thought it might be infected. So I went to the Student Health Centre and the doctor said no, I'd probably just not put enough pressure on my arm after being "disconnected" and the blue lump and red criss-crosses would soon go away. And, sure enough, after turning an interesting shade of yellow, it's almost faded now.

'Flu has badly hit Mark again - he was out for the count this weekend, but I'm hoping it misses me. Despite the matchbox-sized room we share I might just be lucky, touch wood. I feel fine at the moment.

I discussed my thesis topic with Dr. [CENSORED: surname] on Friday and now I've to cobble together a rough written proposal for him this Friday. He says my ideas sound good, so I'm hoping it will go thro'. I'm quite excited about it, I think the subject will be interesting & worthwhile if I can do it OK.

And I've been running around getting names for the "Keep Maggie Open" list. I got about 20 and hope that's enough for Moira to convince the Dean of Women it's a going concern, over the summer. I may find out later tonight.

And last night - shock! horror! scandal! - I actually went down to the gym and played some badminton & basketball for an hour, just to feel as if I'm doing something more than push a pen about all day. A crowd from the Maggie book the gym for that time on a Sunday, it's fun, and I'll probably go regularly if I can. Funnily enough, a "jock" around here is a PE student!

Adel, the Egyptian, came down for a cup of coffee on Friday - we'd both been to see "On the Waterfront" at the film soc. - and he tried to teach me the Egyptian alphabet. He said my Arabic sounded like a Chinese trying to pronounce English!

So life goes busily on. I haven't started cataloguing the Maggie's library yet, though I've acquired the necessary file cards & box. And I've a day's outing at Mactaquac Park coming up on Saturday - it's "Maggie weekend". A group from the house will be skating, skiing, toboganning ("beaver-boganning"), taking sleigh rides, and having a meal at the lodge out there and a party afterwards. Should be fun. I hope the weather's okay. I'm going to try to borrow skates & hire skis. No backward flips, promise! It'll be cross-country skiing, not downhill - safer & easier.

But I'm also working away. Classes should be just about over when Carole comes, & I'm hoping to have my course work finished by April. Roll on spring! Hope you're well. I'll write again soon,

[CENSORED: forename]

This work is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

The SCOTS Project and the University of Glasgow do not necessarily endorse, support or recommend the views expressed in this document.


Cite this Document

APA Style:

Correspondence from Canada: Letter 28 - 25.01.82. 2024. In The Scottish Corpus of Texts & Speech. Glasgow: University of Glasgow. Retrieved 25 June 2024, from

MLA Style:

"Correspondence from Canada: Letter 28 - 25.01.82." The Scottish Corpus of Texts & Speech. Glasgow: University of Glasgow, 2024. Web. 25 June 2024.

Chicago Style

The Scottish Corpus of Texts & Speech, s.v., "Correspondence from Canada: Letter 28 - 25.01.82," accessed 25 June 2024,

If your style guide prefers a single bibliography entry for this resource, we recommend:

The Scottish Corpus of Texts & Speech. 2024. Glasgow: University of Glasgow.


Information about Document 876

Correspondence from Canada: Letter 28 - 25.01.82


Text audience

Adults (18+)
Audience size 3-5
Writer knew intended audience

Text details

Method of composition Handwritten
Year of composition 1982
Word count 781

Text medium

Other airmail

Text publication details

Part of a longer series of texts
Name of series Correspondence from Canada

Text setting


Text type



Author details

Author id 852
Gender Male
Decade of birth 1950
Educational attainment University
Age left school 17
Upbringing/religious beliefs Protestantism
Occupation University Lecturer
Place of birth Ayr
Region of birth S Ayr
Birthplace CSD dialect area Ayr
Country of birth Scotland
Place of residence Bridge of Weir
Region of residence Renfrew
Residence CSD dialect area Renfr
Country of residence Scotland
Father's occupation Insurance Broker
Father's place of birth Auchinleck
Father's region of birth S Ayr
Father's birthplace CSD dialect area Ayr
Father's country of birth Scotland
Mother's occupation Dental Receptionist
Mother's place of birth Ayr
Mother's region of birth S Ayr
Mother's birthplace CSD dialect area Ayr
Mother's country of birth Scotland


Language Speak Read Write Understand Circumstances
English Yes Yes Yes Yes In most everyday situations
Portuguese Yes No No Yes When trying to communicate with my in-laws
Scots Yes Yes Yes Yes In domestic/activist circles; reading literature