Answering your questions on Independence

News 28/02/08''Christine Grahame SNP MSP
News 28/02/08''Christine Grahame SNP MSP

Independence WHITE PAPER

On September 18 next year everyone over the age of 16 and on the voters roll will have the chance to vote for our nation’s future: Independence or No Change.

A Yes vote would mean such things as foreign policy and defence, pensions, tax and benefits, and energy, would move over lock, stock and barrel from Westminster – that would, take by expert reckoning, some 18 months. In the meantime the Scottish Parliament would go on as now. There would then be a Scottish general election to form the first government of an independent Scotland.

You can access the White Paper at www.scot.referendum.co, or phone 0300 0121 809 to order a free copy.

However, I know many of you will have questions and I am happy to answer them, either at my surgeries or through emails, letters and phone calls. Better still, I could come to where you are. So, if you are in a mums and toddlers group, youth group, pensioners club etc, let me know. I’d love to pop along and we don’t need to talk politics!

Debtmas

Xmas is coming and there’s no avoiding it, let alone affording it. OK, I know I’ll sound like Scrooge, but from the first breath of November we have been bombarded with ads encouraging us to spend.

It is a sobering thought that thousands of Scots are still paying off last year’s debts and gearing up to add more.

Thankfully, in my childhood, there were no ads. I remember one big present I got was a doll with yellow frock, little plastic sandals and a straw hat – I was very specific in my request to Santa. That was it, apart from the odd small present from a relative.

The big event was Christmas dinner when mum, an excellent cook, did everything from scratch – turkey, tatties, trifle – while dad polished the mackintosh reds till they shone in the candle-light. Now we’re being force fed to buy beyond our means.

Enough I say. Mind you, I have squirrelled away some presents for grandchildren.

Granny’s Apple Juice

My two-year-old granddaughter, going on 17, is a delight (a) because she gives me big cuddles on sight, (b) she is a girl and as I have two sons I can shop for “girly” things, and (c) I can hand her back to her parents when exhausted by story reading, rescuing the cats from her etc.

So there I was, a wee whisky poured, story book in hand, child on lap. I reached for my glass before launching into The Big Bottom Hunt, when she commented on “granny’s apple juice “. Ah, the eyes of a child!

Henceforth Glenfiddich, Aberlour et al have a new name. I quite like it. Now where did I put my apple juice?