And so to the education directors' annual conference near Peebles and Fraser Sanderson, the outgoing president.
For the past couple of years, the venue has been within close proximity of the country's largest petrochemical plant with its towers of flame and billowing smoke. So the change of venue was appreciated by many.
"I am not of the view that Grangemouth is the end of the world - but you can certainly see it from there," quipped the man from rural Dumfries and Galloway.
Size matters in the south-west. One English after-dinner speaker revealed his links to a school in Skye which had all of four pupils.
"That sounds like a large school where we are," Sanderson replied.