A couple of weeks ago, I returned to Scotland, because where else is better to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day? As with all of my northern sojourns, my chief concern was returning with fistfuls of “queer Scotch money” that I’d be unable to spend in Cambridge. My anxiety was heightened by an article in the Sunday Times that detailed how the Sheraton Hong Kong charges a different (and poorer) rate to exchange Scottish banknotes.

You can imagine my amusement, then, as I stuffed my face at the Glasgow Airport Burger King, and watched as the till operator refused a new £20 Bank of England note, as “it doesn’t say ‘Sterling’ on it.” Oh such irony that this should be  the first English note to depict a Scotsman.

It’s just too bad the person affected was a bemused foreign tourist instead of an ignorant southern shopworker, but voyeurs can’t be choosers….

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