Growing up in one of those mammoth 1960 high-rise block of flats in a country with a climate perfect for potato production meant that as a child, examples of the exotic world beyond the east of Scotland were few and far between. In fact, the most colourful thing in my early childhood was a yellow and grey cockatiel called smokey which could effortlessly cause endless frustration with his ringing telephone imitation.
Smokey, bless his telephonic tendancies, is sadly long gone. I'd like to say he received a dignified burial as all pets should but alas, living in a 21-storey concrete box means opportunities for funeral procedures are limited. As such, smokey went off to the local incinerator inside a coco pops box via the communal rubbish chute.