There were a couple of unwelcome malfunctions before a ball was kicked.

My usual parking space, in a leafy, secluded place close to the venue had been nabbed by a vehicle with Irish number plates. More on that international incident later.

Then my accreditation pass had the hole punched in the wrong place, an unwanted hinderance given how many times you need to show it.

And, finally, my regular seat had been switched. Honest, it wasn’t me who switched it.

Unfortunately, as my mini-dramas were ending, Scotland’s were just beginning.

You kind of worked out what kind of day it might be when the card display, which was supposed to deliver a slogan or message, just didn’t have enough participants playing ball and instead looked somewhat fragmented. Or maybe it was in Chinese?

It was nothing like the similar displays seen at football venues, say like Ibrox. But then Scotland get fewer penalties than the residents there. Boom boom.

A week ago I was in the same place, having seen Scotland defeat Italy and awaiting Ireland putting everything – title, Grand Slam, Triple Crown, back to back championships – on the line against the English. And they lost. Which could have slightly changed the dynamic of yesterday’s clash at Murrayfield. It didn’t.

The Irish contingent, namely those who were coming on a jolly with the added bonus of some international rugby as a reasonable excuse, still showed every bit as much anticipation ahead of this game as there was seven days ago.

It was still a "must win" for both sides, just no longer being announced in block capitals.

The thing about the Irish coming to Scotland is that they will get here, regardless of the obstacles or natural phenomenon placed in their way.

The latest winter storm caused a few delays with the ferry services running from Northern Ireland, but nothing too upsetting. There was always a bar at hand to ease the wait, although one wag did admit that some disembarked their boat "like a scene from Saving Private Ryan".

It was more the alcohol intake that had made its mark rather than Storm Erik, although one learned chap wondered if it might actually have been Eric, and named after former Irish stalwarts Elwood or Miller. Unlikely, but then, who started giving bad weather cycles names in the first place?

Ferry travel, more often than not, means cars and buses becoming the preferred mode of transport to continue the journey up from the Galloway coast.

There were a few registrations plates from the north, others with "D", "C" and "L" which had come from further afield. Maybe that should be just field, given the state of one Shogun that appeared to have an export/import licence when it came to farm muck.

Perhaps the border between the Republic and Northern Ireland, whether soft or hard, will include car-wash facilities.

If the outside of this big 4x4 was "hingin" in agricultural "materials", I can’t imagine what the inside would have been like. Valeting by means of a power wash perhaps, while I fancy a couple of Magic Tree air fresheners would have been inadequate.

Still, they got here (and found an excellent parking spot, alas) and that was all that mattered.

Although, after being so rudely awakened by the English a week ago, perhaps the desperation to win, among supporters at least, had been replaced by a desperation just to have a good time in what would be the last such away day prior to Brexit.

By 20 minutes, the Irish chorus was in full voice with plenty to sing about. By the hour mark, they were giving an encore.

Some 15 years I brought along a business associate to enjoy some hospitality. While most Saturdays, he watched his sport at another well-known rugby venue (namely Ibrox), this was Colin’s (I’ve not changed his name to save him the embarrassment) first rugger game, never mind international.

It was all going so well, lovely food, fine wine, good chat, until Ireland scored and their supporters, who surrounded us, broke in to song. Having misinterpreted the line "broad and narrow" (when he offered up his own cover version), the first chorus of the Fields of Athenry – so beautifully harmonised once more yesterday – had him appealing to the stewards (easily identified by their "sectarian jackets" as they’ve become known following one failed parliamentarians midweek outburst) to have 20,000 Ireland fans ejected. Too much for the bold Colin, and he left. I should have joined him. Scotland were hammered 36-6.

It was closer yesterday, but the same outcome and songs.

Ireland took the win, deserved, and the prizes on offer, and ended Scotland’s dreams of another Grand Slam. Still, a championship can still be won. Just Paris next, and Ireland again in the World Cup. Oh joy ...