Nov 30 2011 by Kaiya Marjoribanks, Stirling Observer Wednesday
RETIRED fireman John Young couldn’t believe the price of sending his parcel packed with Braveheart country mementoes.
But it was the significance rather than the expense which left him gobsmacked – £13.14.
The 59-year-old put the package on the scales at Whins of Milton Post Office, just yards from the 1314 pub and Bannockburn Heritage Centre, and saw the digits 1314 – the year of the Battle of Bannockburn.
The parcel was destined for his American friends Bill and Pat Braddock of Boise, Idaho, whom John and wife Margaret, of Clark Street, Bannockburn, had met on holiday in Australia.
John said: “We had invited Bill and Pat to visit us, which they did earlier this year.
“We took them around all the sights and they particularly loved the Wallace Monument, Stirling Castle, the Heritage Centre, and the Bruce statue and were really taken by being in Braveheart country.
“When they went back to Idaho they sent us a present to thank us so I thought we could send them some Scottish things in a Christmas parcel which would remind them of their holiday here.
“I bought some books about William Wallace, Robert the Bruce and Rob Roy. I also bought some Famous Grouse chocolate and I put in some of the Stirling Observer’s Pictures of the Week as all year I have been cutting out the ones I like.
“There was also a Bannockburn calendar and a Christmas card.
“I went up to Whins of Milton Post Office. In the course of the conversation I had told the girl what was in the parcel and about the William Wallace and Robert the Bruce connection and put it on the scales. The girl just looked at me and said ‘you’re not going to believe this’ and pointed out the 1314.
“It’s one of those situations where you just think ‘what are the chances of that?’. Even if I had cut out fewer pictures from the Observer or hadn’t put just one thing in it, it would have been completely different. I couldn’t believe it.
“I think 13 and 14 are going to have to be on my lottery ticket from now on!”