Saturday, 27 July 2013

The Sunday Times Where Was I? Holiday Competition

Reasonably straightforward this week, the most likely answers, as seen through the possibly flawed perceptual filters of my own reality tunnel, seem to me to be :

Q1. Dunblane

Q2. Monty Python and The Holy Grail

"Ye Jacobites by name, lend an ear, lend an ear
Ye Jacobites by name, lend an ear
Ye Jacobites by name
Your faults I will proclaim
Your doctrines I maun blame, you will hear, you will hear
Your doctrines I maun blame, you will hear"

...Robert Burns

The Eastender raises a glass to the king over the water and salutes his ancestors who took part in the 'hunting expedition' against the upstart Hanoverian pretender's dragoons, at Sheriffmuir on the 13th November 1715, a costly fight, as like many Jacobites, they were declared attainted shortly thereafter and had their lands confiscated, (the attainted ruling, is still on the statute books to this day and has never been rescinded).

The initial clues place us in the vicinity of the Sheriffmuir battlefield, I am not sure what the 'mon' clue refers to but think it could be from the song 'Ye Jacobites by Name Lend an Ear' by Robert Burns, though the word is spelled 'maun' in that. North of the city of Stirling, lies the cathedral town of Dunblane, some sources claim that the name of the settlement means 'The Fort of Blane'. Blane was a sixth century saint and his feast day is given in some references, as August 10th.

Around three miles west of Dunblane, lies Doune castle, which according to historic Scotland has a 100 foot high gate house and was constructed for Robert Stewart, Duke of Albany (born c 1340), sometime in the 14th century. It was also the location used for the Kinghts who say 'Ni' in the film 'Monty Python and The Holy Grail', which was shot c 1975 . A second castle, which lies around two and half miles south east of Doune, is Arnhall castle. This is a ruined three story tower, which was constructed from rubble, c1617. Arnhall castle was also used as a location in the Monty Python film and lies in the grounds of Kier house, which some references claim, was the birthplace of a truly great Briton, David Stirling, founder of the SAS.

A third castle, which according to the OS map, lies within the grounds of the Stirling university campus, is Airthrey castle. Travelling two miles east of Airthrey castle, brings us to Menstrie castle which is said by some sources, to be the birthplace (c 1577) of Sir William Alexander, 1st Earl of Stirling,who was one of the founders of Nova Scotia.

Eine stetige Tropfen höhlt den Stein (misoneists, read ye no further)

The Eastender has discovered there are words concealed within some of the UK lotto data. Below is one found this week in the Thunderball game, the original data shown below

Wed 24 Jul 13 08 11 25 26 29 04
Sat 20 Jul 13    15 18 21 23 38       03
Fri 19 Jul 13    10 17 30 35 36        11

was substituted as follows:

A = 1, B = 2, C = 3, D = 4, E = 5, F = 6, G = 7, H = 8, I = 9, J = 10, K = 11, L = 12, M = 13, N =14,
O = 15, P = 16, Q = 17, R = 18, S = 19, T = 20, U = 21, V = 22, W = 23, X = 24, Y = 25, Z =26

Wed 24 Jul 13 H K [Y] Z 29           D
Sat 20 Jul 13  [O] R U W 38            C
Fri 19 Jul 13  [J] Q 30 35 36            K

Would you jump for JOY, if you won the Lotto?

This is real world data, check it for yourself on the national lotto web site if you don't believe it.

The Eastender's analysis shows that sometimes there can be anything up to twenty two possible words which could complete in the next game and it is no good betting when this is the case  but there are instances, when there are between one and five possible words, where 1 - 2 of the letters which form those words actually appear in the next game and it is at this point, that a bet with a low cost permutation, can sometimes yield positive results.

Read more about this here:

Lotto Codewords In the Thunderball Game

Link to the competition:

Where Was I?


  1. "Mon" may refer to "Monument" i.e. MacRae Memorial (Battle of Sheriffmuir 1715).

  2. Thanks, writesbad and Flonska,I hadn't thought about that aspect of the 'mon' clue.