Everybody knows the cliché of the piper on the shortbread tin. But have you experienced the breathtaking reality of a hundred pipers skirling in deafening unison? This isn’t an image from Scotland’s past: it happens every August at the Edinburgh Military Tattoo or on Glasgow Green.
Or take food. We all know the stereotypical notions of traditional Scottish fare: haggis and porridge and the legendary deep fried Mars Bar. Not anymore: Scotland’s new elite of super-chefs like Gordon Ramsay, Nick Nairn and Andrew Fairlie are taking the country’s incredible natural produce – our beef, venison and seafood – and elevating them to Michelin starred levels.
Or that the kilt is making a comeback on the catwalk as designers like Jean Paul Gaultier, Vivienne Westwood and Glasgow’s own Jonathan Saunders take traditional Scottish dress to places the clan chiefs never dreamed of?