FOLK duo Phil Cunningham and Aly Bain opened their latest tour in St Margaret's Church in Dalry this week with Phil pointing out a large electric fan positioned at Aly's feet and explaining to the audience: "Like all Shetlanders he can't play a note unless there is a Force 8 in his face. When he first came to the mainland he was thrown because there was nothing to lean into."

After a number of slow moving tunes were warmly received, Phil promised they would be released in an album entitled "Can't get off our airs."

NOT the best of weather over the last couple of weeks, it must be said. Sage advice from Ross Craig who tells us: "A good tip for escaping the rain is to walk confidently into any office and say you're a little early for your meeting. You'll get a seat and a coffee."

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DOHA College in Qatar, an international school where half its students are from Britain, is holding a reunion for alumni in Glasgow on June 2. They do things differently in Qatar as you might imagine. College principal Mark Leppard reminisced with us: "When I was teaching, my form class was asked to bring a pet to school. We had the usual things, some rabbits, even snakes. One of my students then said his driver would bring in his pet. In came a heavily sedated tiger on a lead. It stayed for 20 minutes and frightened the life out of the rabbits."

Any other memories of studying abroad?

PROBABLY Britain's highest ever comedy gig takes place on Monday afternoon on the summit of Ben Lomond to raise money for Scottish Mountain Rescue, and Trossachs Search and Rescue Dogs. Four of the comedians, including Gary Little, are munro baggers. However we like the confession of Mark Nelson, who is also taking part, who says the highest he has ever climbed is the stairs at Hampden Park to see his beloved Queen of the South.

OUR tales of linguistic misunderstandings remind Jane Clark: "Last month, travelling by car from Canada to Vermont, we needed a route map. Asked everywhere including a supermarket where we were directed to Aisle 7. Turned out that Aisle 7 had a splendid selection of kitchen mops."

AN observation many might agree with - says Ian Power: "If some people caressed their lovers like they caress their phones, they wouldn't be using those phones quite as much."

CHILDREN are getting more sophisticated. A Milton of Campsie reader tells us her six-year-old grand-daughter asked if the Tooth Fairy had a phone number so she could call her and ask how much she gets for each tooth. The same child at Christmas couldn't understand how she could possibly have received a telephone call from Santa as "it would be difficult to get a signal from the North Pole."

GLASGOW businesswoman Michelle Mone, who now runs a fake tan company, annoyed a few folk by stating she would leave Scotland if it voted for independence. Now she has announced that she is leaving anyway. Not everyone was upset apparently. One of the first reactions on social media was: "I see that whip round we had for Michelle Mone's bus fare hit its target."