Monday, 11 May 2009

Diggin The Tramworks

A year past March me and Mand arrived back in Embra for the first time in 6 months. Keen to catch up on the local spraff, i chucked the rucsack in a cab, shouted up an address in Leith and pinned back my lugs. I expected some chat about fitba, or maybe an enquiry as to where we'd been and what we'd been up to - usual kinda taxi chat. What i got was a 20 minute diatribe about "fuckin trams". Our driver was clearly most unimpressed by the festival city's latest moves to improve public transport. Well shy of Leith i had to ask (nicely natch) the driver gadge to wheesht - i was tired and didnae really need the rant.

Turned out this rant would be no isolated incident. Tram ranting's a civic obsession in Embra - everybody hates them cos they've dug up all the roads, cost a fortune and will only amount to a glorified 22 bus route. Actually, that's no true. Leith and the city centre are indeed full of holes and dust and ever changing bus diversions and the amount of cash being handed over to private companies from the public purse is a feckin disgrace. Plus it'll be well into 2011 before we see an actual tram on the streets. But too many cars clog up the city and i reckon the trams'll be a fast, clean and viable alternative for many looking to nip tween Leith, the airport and all points between. Big shame the link to Granton's been bumped and i hope that's not lost forever.

So yesterday whilst quaffing a coupla pints in the Compass Bar, Queen Charlotte Street (great beers, tasty scran, friendly staff) my man Cope mentioned he'd seen bones in a tram hole outside the polis station on Constitution Street. Wisnae really sure i'd heard right but went outside for a wee swatch anyway. And i had heard right. The pic above shows said bones plus some weirdo in a blue tracky top. Not really sure what these bones are - looks like a thigh and 2 horns but i'd love to ken precisely what they are, how old they are and how they got there.

The pic's no the clearest cos Cope's phone is mainly a phone, not a camera. But any ideas about the bones?


  1. Pretty sure I've read a couple of stories regarding this.

    From what I remember some 'bones' were found during the first round of hole diggin in Constitution Street. They were found in close proximity to the Church Graveyard and were apparently remains of Leithers that suffered in the plague of 1645. They ran out of room in the graveyards and just dug graves as close as they could to the church. Pretty sure the aforementioned Plague wiped out half the gadgies who resided in Leith at the time.

    However, I think the bones you're referring to are to far away to be Plaguers (like ma new word there?). Seem to remember reading something last week in the EN about them but can't be bothered trawling thru the website to find it.

    Gid luck in yer bone quest!

  2. Thank you for that info re plaguers, Scottie. I shall trawl the EN website to see what i can unearth (did you see what i did there?)

    Neil, i kinda like the way your thinking. The whole modern history of Scottish fitba may have been very different had said moustachioed maestro been buried prior to May 1986.

    But alas not, just checked (dunno why i had to) and since 1986, one cheek or other of that scabby auld erse called the old firm has won the Premier League every single season. What a shitey league.

  3. Hmmm....well this didnae take long:

    This article includes the following line:

    "The unearthed human remains are currently being carefully recorded and lifted by archaeologists."

    The bones me and Cope saw were lying in a hole next to an empty can o juice, a few fag doubts, a worky's boot and an old Greggs poke.

  4. I reckon they're the bones of the last meal the trackied person ate, he looks hungry. That would also explain the post scran tin o' ginger, fags and the bag from his Greggs onion bridie starter.

  5. The thing I like about the tramworks is that you can hear the leaves rustling in the centre of the city. Oh, wait, that's because there are no actual tramworks going on...

  6. thanks. i would write a more effusive comment but i have the most horrendous hangover.
    my address:
    Jane Cronin
    Shijiazhuang no 42 middle school
    42 wenyuan jie
    lianmeng xilu
    xinhua district
    hebei 050061

  7. Thanks! Luckily my head no longer feels its going to explode either. It could be a case for Inspector Rebus perhaps?

  8. Dougie, the guy in the blue tracky would be delighted to ehar he looks hungry - he thinks he's a bit of a bloater these days.

    Linda, sadly i must agree - cannae understand what happened to strategic planning on this project. Would make more sense to me if they dug a hole, did the work, filled the hole and moved on. City centre's a real mess, i'd be feeling cheated if i'd come to Embra as a visitor this year.

    J, glad to hear yer nippy napper's better.


    Not exactly 'Green' are they?

    Total waste of time and money in my opinion.

  10. The figures quoted are very dubious indeed - a worst case scenario drawn up by the Scottish Government which has been resolutely opposed to the trams from day one published in the Evening News which has also been resolutely opposed to the trams from day one.

    Trams will give people in Edinburgh additional public transport options and will hopefully reduce the number of cars in the city.

    If it was up to me, all private motoring in and out of the city would be very heavily taxed and all monies raised would be spent on subsidising public transport in and around the city.

    I hate cars. They smell and they're noisy and they hurt a bit when they whack into you.