Highway Highlander

THE HIGHWAY HIGHLANDER

There was a gay roadman, called Dolan Ghoul,
He worked for the County since he left the school,
All through the long years he watched men come and go,
From Roberts, the Surveyor, to Hamish the Crow.

He traveled the highways o’er forty-six years,
He tasted the sorrows, the joy and the tears,
He tells of the struggles, his toil and the strife,
His memories were vivid, for this was his life.

The Surveyor once asked would they care for a drink,
“Indeed, sir, we would”, he said with a wink,
“Just one ounce of whisky” then rubbing his palms
Explained that an ounce equaled sixteen good drams.

Before leaving Crask ,they’d fill up their tanks,
And stop for relief, on the Tongue side of Stank,
Inchkinhloch and Loch Loyal they’s pass with a roar,
And Gabby would wave, as they passed Lettermore.

Big Alex, the Roller, once looked at old “Dol”,
Saying “Your just as much as my stomach can hold”,
“Why can’t you give orders out loudly and clear,
Not a “droppie up yonder” and a “wee grainie here”.

Dolan and Bain got a cussing quite blue,
He even cast doubts on their parentage too.
“You may need us some day”  the lads quickly said,
said Alex , I would, like a hole in my head”.

When asked what he did with the snow on the Crask,
Dol thought  “thats a damn silly question to ask”,
“We gather it up and we take it away,
and we spread it out smoothly on Vagastie brae.”

He challenged the squad, as he did in the past,
We'll all make for Crockies and I won’t be the last,
He whipped off his wellies and sped past the hall,
But was passed by Big Alex, Bob Spladger and Willie Shawl.

Then came relief, promotions were made,
He became  2 I C (second-in-charge) of the Skerray brigade,
Perhaps in the future I’ll be number one,
“Shay-shay” came the answer from Boss, Sandy Gunn.

He served his apprenticeship digging the holes,
You’ll see on the road from the Blhar Mhor to Tolls,
Then Sandy Gunn said “One thing’s a cert,
At cutting the offlets, you’re really expert”.

Time quickly passed like a house thats on fire,
Till at last Sandy Gunn was obliged to retire,
Said Dol to himself “This is my golden hour”,
As Sandy bequeathed him the mantle of power.

On taking up office he muttered “My God,
There’s only Hugh Gunn and myself in the Squad”,
The bosses when told said “We’ll soon alter that”,
They doubled the strength with Dol Paddy and Pat.

Dol sits in the front of the chariot green,
And smiles to himself , like a festival queen,
As Hughie Gunn motored in search of a load,
You could hear Dolan singing “I’m King of the Road”.

I took up my duties as August began,
for soon we'd loose DP, the corner house man
And Dolan Ghoul told us there could be no doubt
Peter Mackenzie would soon have the shout,

Before he departed he said he was proud
To be  the sherang of the old Skerray crowd
Now I am leaving but happy to say
the squad will be strengthened by Henry Claickbea.

He said on retiring, “Mackenzies the man”,
“I’ll believe he’s reshaping the old master plan”,
“I trained him myself, so his praise I’ll sing loud”,
“Though I’ll doubt if he’ll harrow what Dolan has ploughed.”

“I’ll hand over to Peter my mantle and crown,
And no more will I jump when I see Jackie Brown”,
Like the dew when the sun shines, my worries have gone,
Now I’ll put on my slippers and lie back with John.

James Mackay, 18 Lotts, Skerray