It’s a scientific fact that Govanhill is one of the world’s best places to live.
The rest of the south side, not so much.
The sinister neighbourhoods surrounding Govanhill – your Queen’s Parks, your Langsides, your Mount Floridas – have an air of menace about them.
Best not to venture there after dark. Everyone’s in bed.
Polmadie’s like that too, but with added siege mentality. Nothing much comes out of Polmadie. I’ve known good people go there and never be seen again, just like Toryglen.
Places like King’s Park or Oatlands don’t appear on any map and only really exist in people’s imaginations, like in ghost stories.
Then there’s Crossmyloof, where the weather is different and the language is too. It’s a foreign country, like Strathbungo.
I used to work beside a guy from Crossmyloof who spoke in code all the time. What year was your granny born and how many sugars do you take in your tea?
And your Gorbals, your Shawlands and your Pollokshields are all tartan trews, shortbread tins and thin-lipped fundamentalists who chain up swing parks on a Sunday.
They pretend to have beautiful scenery of lochs and castles and glens, but when you get there it’s just horrible weather, terrible food and songs about jumpers. Fiddly-diddly bollocks.
Govanhill is too weird for all that.
We have our seductive urban vibe of loft apartments, art galleries and boutique hotels. Our radical poets, golden retrievers and overlapping left backs.
It’s in our nature, and everything has to be true to its nature. Don’t you worry your sweet ass about that.