傍着青青的山依着碧绿的水太阳照在罗梦湖上

周六去了一个Scotland Heritage Tour,或曰一个苏格兰风情的旅游团,仍然是上车睡觉下车拍照的类型。跟散团旅游是我最常规的旅游方式——在杭州的时候我就靠这种一车把你拖到目的地,晚上再一车把你拖回来的散拼大巴团去了除周庄外的六大古镇(同质化还蛮高的),不累,不费脑子,一般水准还可以,偶尔还有惊喜。

covid-19期间这种散团都不能开业,估计是损失惨重,现在能复工工作人员也是喜气洋洋的。我特意观察了一下车上的旅客,以前印象中这样的老年团是老年夫妻为主,今天仔细数了数却发现一半以上都是老年姐妹或闺蜜结伴出游,真正夫妻出行的好像不到一半。由此观之,少女们聚众养老应该是一个很可行的方案。

目的地是多伦多西边的Norfork County,有一个教堂改装的苏格兰餐厅,门口一个小哥带着全套的风笛套装、穿着裙子在门口一阵吹拉弹唱。车上的大爷太太们冲下去自然免不了一顿合影,小哥十分配合,大约这也是工作内容之一,时常如此的话也算谋生不易。餐厅的彩色玻璃,和我在Montreal时参观的教堂里的彩色玻璃类似,当然精致度则天差地别,大约是某一时代的教堂特色?

下图是网上随便搜的,小哥和他穿得差不多在门口鼓着腮帮子吹,大家都是社畜我不想增加小哥的工作量了……

吃的是苏格兰餐,确实是我以前没有吃过的类型,有不知道什么做的浓汤配面包,还有什么肉饼,味道倒也不算坏。重头戏在后面,一个穿着BBC年代剧里(南方与北方、Cranford那一类)餐厅经理的衣服、挺着巨大的肚子的大爷,抱着一个我也不认识的乐器,上台就开始要唱歌了。

他先唱了一首歌,曲调倒满顺耳的,大家不会唱也能跟着打拍子;接着他说要唱一首大家肯定知道的歌,我有一点好奇,猜测会不会是我唯一知道的苏格兰歌曲Loch Lomond(《罗梦湖》)——竟然猜中了。

You'll take the high road and I'll take the low road, and I'll be in Scotland afore you. Where me and my true love will never meet again, on the bonnie, bonnie banks of Loch Lomond.

这首苏格兰民谣的起源 ,是苏格兰的Lomond湖区,随苏格兰的Prince Charlie 反抗英格兰统治,最终被镇压。战败要被处死的战士托人把最后的信带给家乡的女友——他的信和灵魂分走两路回到苏格兰,但他和爱人却永远不能再在罗梦湖畔相见。

在这个版本下看到一个评论:

This song has particular meaning to me. I'm descended from Orkney Scots who fought with Bonny Prince Charlie. After the battle of Culloden in 1745 when the Scottish clans were defeated by the English, my ancestor David fled to the American colonies with his son Robert, leaving his older son John in Scotland to care for David's wife until they could be sent for. David and Robert eventually settled in upstate New York where they changed their name from McGregor to Smith. Unfortunately David's wife died before she and John could cross the ocean, and John joined the British army not wanting anything to do with his father and brother. During the American Revolution, Robert fought with the Americans and John fought with the British. According to family stories they met at the Battle of Freeman's Farm in 1777 where John was wounded. The story then has it Robert took the wounded John home to his farm a few miles away where John died after reconciling with his brother, his only request that Robert would deliver his bible to his wife in Kirkwall . Robert then journeyed back to Scotland for the first time since he fled as a child to fulfil his brother's wish. As result, to this day the American and the Scottish sides of my family are still close and every now we get together. I live just down the road from Robert's farm which is still in the family and I've twice gotten to go to Scotland where my distant cousin still has John's bible. I always imagine that this song is the two brothers speaking to each other in those last few hours they had together.

brief一下就是这条评论的作者,他的祖上参加了Prince Charlie对英格兰的战争,战败后,他的祖先David和儿子Robert逃亡到美洲殖民地,大儿子John留在苏格兰照顾母亲。Robert和父亲David在纽约安顿下来,希望在苏格兰的亲人能来和他们团聚,但David的妻子去世了。美国独立战争时,弟弟Robert加入了美国军队,哥哥John则跟随英国军队来北美作战,他们在Freeman's Farm战役中相会,Robert把受伤的哥哥John带回家中,John临死前请求弟弟Robert把自己带在身边的圣经送回苏格兰他妻子的手里。

评论的作者说:我听到这首歌的时候,经常想象它是两兄弟在他们人生中最后的重聚时光里对对方说的话。


饭后去另外一个温室花圃参观,一进去我就被横平竖直的设施给震住了,机械化的程度还比较高。花圃是家族经营,带我们参观的大爷和女儿女婿一起经营这里几十年,门口有一个小伙子在帮忙装花,出来的时候听他们打招呼才知道这是他的外孙——大爷看着十分精干,真看不出来有这么大的孙子。

花圃的参观倒是有一点出乎我的意料,我叶公好农,好吃懒做但内心有个农场梦,总发梦以后发达了买个农场雇一些墨西哥工人来干活我好做甩手掌柜。一进去我就开始盘算这个温室要花多少钱,各项成本估算下来我猜是千万加币级别的投资。路上我照着他们装花的箱子上的标记,搜到花圃的名字和网站上的介绍,再搜索温室大棚的成本,和我的估算相当。

育苗后转栽到大棚里的工作还是需要工人的,我看他们墙上挂的白板上,留的标记有些是英西双语,猜想工人们确实以南美为主。

中途同行的游客问大爷,这里的玫瑰和玫瑰出口国厄瓜多尔、哥伦比亚相比有什么竞争优势吗?大爷很直接地说没有哦,赤道上的国家种玫瑰就是有天然优势,长得又高又大又漂亮,我们跟他们相比没有什么特别的竞争力,只是我们在本土做久了,成本并没有大家想象的那么贵,近距离也比较灵活。

出来的时候还看到成箱成箱的花打包好,说是要运往Florida的,这又刷新了我的认知——Florida的气候当然比这里要好得多,有什么道理要在加拿大建温室种花,然后再运到美国南方呢?我猜可能是种花这个行业利润已经压薄,对于已经有投资有生产的花商来说,利润足够维持下去;而对于新的投资者来说,投资巨大成本很高而利润并不值得特意来加入这个战局?

赤道沿线的国家都是适合种玫瑰的,但好些国家政局不稳,相对稳定的厄瓜多尔和肯尼亚是主要的玫瑰出口国。我印象里那些出口玫瑰品相好得多,猜测和这里的花商们供应的市场也不一样。等我冬天再到厄瓜多尔好个农。

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