When we went to Scotland a few months ago, Matt ordered a full Scottish breakfast at a restaurant our first day.
It came with haggis.
In case you don’t know what that is, haggis, a traditional Scottish dish, is: “a savory pudding containing sheep’s pluck (heart, liver and lungs); minced with onion, oatmeal, suet, spices, and salt, mixed with stock, traditionally encased in the animal’s stomach”.
That does not sound appetizing in any way. Honestly, it does not. I know this. No thinking person would reasonably read that description and think, “MMMMMMMM, haggis. That sounds good, I’ll try that!”.
But you know what? I tried it anyway; we all did. Even the kids. When that plate was delivered to the table, every one of us took at least a small bite.
You know why? Because we were in Scotland and haggis is a traditional Scottish dish, maybe the most famous traditional Scottish food of all. And what was going to happen if we tried it? Nothing. The worst thing that would happen is that we’d have tried something that tasted badly. You take a sip of your drink and you move on. But maybe you find out that you LOVE haggis. And you’d never have known if you hadn’t tried it.
“Well?” I asked.
Not bad was the general consensus. Not delicious, but not terrible.
“And,” said Bridget, “now I can always say I’ve tried it. Now I know.”
In that moment, with that statement, as I looked at all four of my kids chewing thoughtfully on bites of spiced sheep organs, I felt proud and I felt energized and I felt like a good mother. Like if I do nothing else right in this life, at least I’ve taught my children not to be afraid to try something new.
So many people live in fear of trying a new thing. People limit themselves on where they go and what they do and who they talk to and what they eat and what they wear based solely on the fact that the thing they do is the thing they’ve always done.
What a waste.
What the hell is the point of living if you’re unwilling to ever try something new? If you never take chances and risks, where’s the fun? How will you ever find out what you love if you only ever stick to what you know?
So go to Scotland. Try the damn haggis. At least you can say you did it.