Monday, March 14, 2005

A Wilted Crocus From The Curate's Garden

Still lagged from the trip to Murrayfield - 700-odd miles in 32 hours !

Highlights - the run from Moffat to Peebles via the Grey Mare's Tail and St Mary's Loch on a beautiful Sunday morning.

The large number of Welshmen in kilts.

The immaculately observed silence in memory of Douglas Elliot.

The haddock at Brattisani's. And the child-friendly waitress, who cheered up a tired seven year old girl.

There was a rugby match too, of which I will say little, in respect to the Scot I watched the game with. Let it suffice that he had his head in his hands after ten minutes, and when he was late back with a drink at half time I was concerned lest I find him cutting his wrists in the toilet ...

Enough. Have a look at this, from Faut De Mieux, checking Blimpish and shoeing Madeleine, whose historical howler this week is that a strong sense of English identity was a 19th century invention. I suppose she could be referring to a certain kind of European nationalism - but the whole glory of English nationalism is that it was never like the nationalisms of Europe, just as England was never like Europe.

Let me quote a great Victorian, writing in the aftermath of the Armada's defeat.

Come the three corners of the world in arms,
And we shall shock them.
Nought shall make us rue,
If England to itself do rest but true

No comments: