The Amazing Mr Bain

The Meenister’s Log

Jimmy Bain was an Elder at St.John’s Whitecraig Church, just outside Musselburgh.

He was one of the kindliest, most decent, caring men you could care to meet.  The owner of a local Quarry business, he once sent his staff on a free holiday to Majorca – as a thank you for their hard work.

On a Sunday morning, when I got into the pulpit there would sometimes be Jimmy’s Hibs Season-Ticket book to allow me to go to Easter Road to watch a Hobbos’ game.  There was, every week, a “sweetie”  lying there for me

Now, talking of sweets, there was a story some years ago about Jimmy and the strange case of the man who flagged down a coach load of school kids.

From memory, it goes something like this: a coach with Primary School children from Kelso was on its way to Edinburgh Zoo.

Suddenly, a car overtook them at great speed and the driver leaped out into the middle of the road, frantically flagging down the bus.

Who was this stranger?  What did he want?

It was, of course, none other than James Bain.

Here’s what had happened: sometime before Jimmy had been driving behind the coach with the youngers who were waving enthusuastically at him from their rear window.

On the spur of the moment, he decided to overtake and find the nearest sweet shop – which he did & bought up what seemed to be half the stock.  By this time, the bus had gone past, so Jimmy got in his car, laden with boxes, and chased after it.

When he caught up, he explained the situation and sweeties were passed around to thrilled youngsters and delighted teachers (and the bus driver!).

In fact, there were so many left over, that virtually the whole school got a treat the next day.

What a wonderful person we had in James Bain

(Jimmy once joked that Nelson Mandela’s first words on being released from prison were “Is Jimmy Bain still giving away sweeties?!)

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Filed under The Ramblings of a Reformed Ecclesiastic

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