Cover of Material Remains

braced against the wind

Sunday, 31 May 2015

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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Robert McIntosh
Robert McIntosh says:

The hardest thing for me, living in St. Andrews a few years before you, and being a resident of Hamilton Hall, was that the coldest Northern wind would blast straight in from the sea across West Sands, and you would strain forward, leaning into the wind as you made your way down Golf Place, pushing to make any headway. As you approached the corner the Scores, you'd find it was being cut like a stone knife by the buildings and if you chose to turn that particular corner you'd be suddenly knocked forward on your face as the wind suddenly came from behind. It was the oddest sensation.

June 01, 2015

Richard W H Bray
Richard W H Bray says:

Robert, I stayed many an evening in Hamilton and remember well those gale force winds that seemed to change their mind at will.

June 05, 2015

Sally Bayley
Sally Bayley says:

Dear Richard, I've posted your book to my St. Andrean contacts. Really good luck! And thank you for the book pledge on 'The Private Life of the Diary'. I lived on The Scores in a cottage. Memories of being blown sideways by the wind are strong.

August 03, 2015

Richard W H Bray
Richard W H Bray says:

Thank you for that, Sally, and you're very welcome.

August 11, 2015

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