Mobile phones. Ear pieces. The buzz of radios.

Welcome to Milngavie town centre two weeks ago, when the Real Radio Renegade decided to pay us a visit.

Unless you’ve been living in a parallel universe for the last few years, the Real Radio Renegade is a mystery figure who visits various towns and cities across Central Scotland. He leaves clues on the Real Radio web pages and calling cards at different locations to indicate where he may be hiding.

There is a bounty on his head (normally anything from £1,000 to £5,000) and in order to catch him, you have to ask everybody  the winning words “Are You The Real Radio Renegade?” He could literally be the guy standing next to you.

I was listening to Real Radio two weeks ago, when it was revealed from a clue that the RRR was in Milngavie.

Having just completed the weekly shop at Tesco, I wasn’t exactly feeling full of vim and vigour. But the lure of witnessing this event first hand was too much of a temptation!

When I got to the town centre, the atmosphere was terrific! There were men, women and families darting backwards and forwards, asking everybody whether they were the RRR.

All I could see were red faces,  out of breath individuals and other shouting directions to fellow Renegade hunters.

I was asked on numerous occasions whether I was the Renegade (allegedly he has been of the opposite sex on occasion in previous years) and the look of disappointment on faces when they receive a “No sorry” reply makes you realise how dedicated a lot of these Renegade hunters are.

I spoke to one lady from Clydebank who has been hunting him for five years!She was lovely as where the dozens of other people I met that wet and windy Friday lunchtime.  Generous spirited, funny and determined!

Never mind that the rain was lashing down. The traffic down at Milngavie train station, never mind the centre of town, was nose to tail and soggy figures continued to zig zag across the pavements and streets, seeking out this elusive individual. Renegade hunters had  two hours to catch him. Then the game was up.

A calling card was located in the phone box just outside the Kersland Medical Practice.

Hopes were high of capture.

But the clock was ticking; the rain continued to fall and you could almost feel the despondency settling in.

“He’s going to get away,” sighed one man near me, “It’s almost two o’ clock.”

He was right. Two o’ clock came and the RRR rang into Real Radio presenter Paul Harper’s show to gloat in inimitable fashion. With a voice distorted like a Dalek so as not to be recognised, the RRR informed disappointed Milngavie Renegade hunters that he had slipped backwards and forwards across the town without being detected.

As I was driving back home, I saw some of the people I had been speaking to, squelching back to their cars or heading towards the bus stop. But they were laughing and commiserating.

Nice to see that in these difficult times, a sense of humour and camaraderie is still alive and well with many people.

Next time RRR!

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