November 21, 2017

Tartan Army: Karma

8th September 2007 – Scotland 3 – 1 Lithuania

12th September 2007 – France 0 – 1 Scotland

Karma?  I was never a big believer in it until 2007.  Scotland were to play Lithuania at home, and then France away.  I had tickets for both, but couldn’t afford to go to France as I was a poor student.

One of my mates couldn’t make the Lithuania game, so I handed the ticket I’d bought him into the Supporters Club as I didn’t have time to try and sell it before kick-off.  I said they could give it away to somebody in need.  And they did!

A very large angry and ginger Scotsman was soon standing next to me in the stadium ten minutes into the game, he’d been refused entry over confusion with his ticket, and only subdued after they’ve given him mine.  When he found out, I was embraced in a sweaty bear-hug, and thankfully let go to watch Scotland win 3-1.  It was an excellent day – I was on a high, and I was going to France the following day for the away game…

Where’s the Karma?  I rocked up in Edinburgh’s Waverley Train Station in my kilt, wondering how to get EuroStar train ticket from London to Paris.  There were a few other kilted and obvious Tartan Army members (every one of them had large amounts of beer) so I asked them how they were traveling and if they had the EuroStar phone number.

They didn’t just have the number, they had a spare ticket – all the way from Edinburgh to Paris and back!  How much?  Free to a good home!  Karma baby!  And I had drinking buddies for the trip too.

 

Scotland vs Lithuania

 

It was the most memorable Scotland match I’ve seen, we won 0-1, an unbelievable result, with James McFadden shocking everyone with a 30 yard screamer.

Before that, I was in a different section to all my friends, so at half-time, getting a booster from two brave Tartan Army foot-soldiers (who dared not look up), I scaled the 8 foot high glass fence division in the stadium to get over, and with security running up the stairs, I clambered over, with my kilt riding up, I managed to expose myself to half the stadium in the process, much to everyones amusement… or disgust!

I forget what was chanted…

All was forgotten when McFadden scored though – it’s one of my best Tartan Army moments of all time.

 

Afterwards we sang for over an hour in a sushi bar outside the stadium waiting for the crowds to die down, then a couple of us went in to the Latin quarter to meet up with some other friends.

After walking down the middle of the road for so long, a police riot van stopped alongside and emptied, we were surrounded and “invited” into the back.  Having just beaten France, my hopes of a good night were fading fast as we climbed in with the sour looking riot police, and as the blue flashing light came on I had visions of a beating and a jail cell… but you know what, we had an excellent laugh, and they actually drove us all the way through to the Latin Quarter, up the pedestrian streets and parked right outside the bar!

 

Me and Brian before a game

Looking back I think this is one of my most memorable trips.

 

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