In Cathedral's Shadow opens on a dark and stormy night. I don't think I'm ruining anything by giving that away, and by writing the phrase "dark and stormy night" here, I'm able to fulfill my need for cheesy, clichéd lines without polluting the prose of the book. Storms are different on the east coast of Scotland. It's as though the sea and air forget their natural boundaries and join forces to hammer sideways against the shore. I took the photo below late in the afternoon in February of 2009. On a Sunday, that pier would host strolling university students, wearing their traditional bright red gowns. There used to be a myth that standing at the end of the pier on a windy night and feeling the spray of the sea on your face would ensure a first class degree. I never saw anyone pursuing that particular superstition. Certainly not on a day like this.
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