Hitler was no a Pittenweem man

My St Andrews friends who studied medicine did their 3 pre-clinical years at St Andrews itself, and then went to Dundee or Manchester for the 3 post-clinical years. While at St Andrews they had to familiarize themselves with mental illnesses by spending time with patients at the mental hospital in Dundee.

One friend was interviewing a man who seemed so completely rational that there seemed to be no reason for him to be in a mental hospital. Only gradually did it emerge that he was being spied upon by a German submarine lurking off the coast of Fife near the fishing village of Pittenweem. The man's entire world revolved around the few places in East Scotland he had visited or knew about.

But he knew Hitler was after him, even though Hitler had died over two decades earlier. "Of course," he told my friend confidently, "Hitler's no a Pittenweem man. He's from Anstruther." This was another fishing village a further one and a half miles up the coast.

Gradually he became more talkative about himself. It turned out that he was Pope of Rome. When he further admitted he was also Archbishop of Canterbury, my friend thought to catch him out. "Isn't it difficult," he asked, "being head of the Roman Catholic Church and also head of the Church of England?"

The man looked thoughtful, but replied, "Aye. I ken it'll be difficult, but I'll just have to do my best." The phrase became one of our catch phrases for many years, and still is, over half a century later.