Being an Ayrshire kid is a unique experience. We had a childhood like no-one else. Here are 10 clear things you will only understand if you grew up in Ayrshire!
1. You’ve Been On Holiday To Craig Tara
This caravan park on the outskirts of Ayr has been at the heart of many an Ayrshire summer holiday. Even if you only lived a few miles away, spending a week at Craig Tara was the most exciting thing in the world. Splashing in the pool, losing all your spending money at the amusements, and falling asleep in front of the evening entertainment were all staples of a trip to this campsite. Although the holiday always took a dark turn as soon as your dad suggested a visit to the golf course.
2. You Visited The Farm Park At Least Five Times A Year
The Heads of Ayr Farm Park is the only place you could go to play in a real combine harvester, so your parents would insist on upholding the tradition of visiting every single week during the summer holidays. Someone would always get friction burn from the rope swing, someone would cry after being bitten by a goat, and your mum would end up buying everyone ice cream to restore the peace. Despite that, you would still trek back a week later to do it all again.
3. You Had A Birthday Party At Craft Daft
There is just something really appealing about sitting painting a tiny porcelain figure for two hours and that’s exactly what you did at Craft Daft. Despite the fact it probably emptied your parents’ wallets, you definitely sat in the upstairs party room with your school friends and painted little fairy statues together. You also knew never to squeeze too much paint onto your tray or you would feel the wrath of the other Craft Dafters.
4. You Went On A Family Day Out To The Rivergate Centre
For some reason, nobody can visit Irvine’s Rivergate Shopping Centre alone. You have to bring the entire family along. You would be bundled kicking and screaming into the back of the people carrier with your two grans wedged in next to you as your dad prepared to drive everyone to Irvine for the big shopping adventure. Usually, all you would get from this excursion was one of those toys in a plastic ball from the vending machine – and that was only if you were really good.
5. You Trekked To Kilmarnock Cinema Even If Ayr Was Closer
There’s nothing especially wrong with Ayr cinema, but it is a lot smaller than the one in Kilmarnock. As a result, when there was a movie you really wanted to see, you would be dragged all the way to Kilmarnock to go to the bigger cinema – even if this meant driving past the one in Ayr. My primary school was only a five-minute drive away from Ayr cinema but they still drove us to Kilmarnock to see a movie at the end of each year.
6. You Had An Argument About Killieween
At some point in your childhood, you would meet someone from Kilmarnock who would tell you that Halloween was on the last Friday of the month and you would be baffled. Alternatively, you were that person from Kilmarnock trying to convince your friend that nobody goes trick-or-treating the 31st of October unless it is a Friday. You are probably still arguing about it today.
7. You’ve Been Dragged To The Beach Even Though It Is Freezing
Ayrshire sits on the west coast of Scotland and because of this everyone feels that they need to visit the beach every time the sun comes out. The reality, however, is that the beach is freezing cold even on the warmest days. If you have never stood at the edge of the shore physically shaking and watching your toes turn blue, then you are not a true Ayrshire native.
8. You’ve Got An Auntie Pat Or Auntie Janice.
You do. This is not negotiable. Everyone does. If you don’t have a biological Auntie Pat or Auntie Janice, there is definitely a family friend that you call “Auntie” and who is named Pat or Janice.
9. You Get Irrationally Angry About The ‘Other’ Ayrshires
Ayrshire is one county split into three local authority areas which means there are often squabbles over who has the best stuff. South Ayrshire has an airport, but North Ayrshire has the Isle of Arran. East Ayrshire has Dean Park, but South Ayrshire has Turnberry. There is always competition between the three council areas.
10. You Had No Idea What To Do With Your Bins
This has only gotten worse recently. Ayrshire as a whole is very proactive about recycling which led to the creation of multiple colourful wheelie bins. Currently, each household has at least five bins and nobody knows where to keep them. Doing the recycling was your least favourite chore as a child because you didn’t have a clue what to put in each bin.