Today’s post, like every post, is a love letter to the woman without whom there would be no apoplectic.me, no Stroke Bloke, and no Ricky. Thank you, Beth, m-m-m-my Charon.
It’s also for everyone who cares enough to take the time to click through to apoplectic.me. Thanks.
It’s to the memory of the people who built my Scotland, but I’m too late to see again: Hugh, Donald, and, most of all, my mum.
Finally, it’s dedicated to our friends Jen, Paul and Jill. It’s been a privilege to spend this time with you, and we’re honoured to be able to call ourselves your friends. Keep applying constraints and finishing things.
200 million years ago, I read
Scotland had been a desert.
Then I left forever.
Sure enough, as we fly over the filigree fingerling fjords of the Forth,
My old home is no more.
The friendly clearances – and mum’s departure – have seen to that,
Even though I recognize my old da’,
A different man, but still an anchor to the harbour below.
On the edge of the new old world, I am scared.
Over 16 years, I traversed the old new world,
And by the time I was through, we were an entirely new group of people.
I am changed, too –
My sandstone heart broken, yet held together by succulent American oak.
So, as I survey this new land, I have strength.
You brought me back from Buckie,
And, my Charon, you sailed me safely across the Styx
So I returned from the underworld alive
Even though I had no coin for you, so owe you everything.
Now, as we stand shoulder to shoulder on this remote peninsula,
Scotland may be gone,
But Caledonia is my adventure with you.