As Book Week Scotland ends tomorrow, my mind turns to lofty thoughts. Then, feeling uncomfortable at that altitude, it descends back to the usual plateau of bewilderment. Great name for a geographical feature on Mars: the Plateau of Bewilderment.
Though this column tried to avoid controversy, there’s no getting round it: we need to talk about footwear.
Improperly shod, I plodded along the shore. Apologies for the slight echo of Evelyn Waugh’s parody of a naturalist’s prose (“Feather-footed through the plashy fen passes the questing vole”).
Having changed my office for the dining-room – where no one ever dines – and having moved the bird-feeder nearer the house, I see more of my little, feathered friends, who love me in the same way a beautiful, young woman loves a rich, old man.
Strange things happen in the countryside. It’s not necessarily a place that I recommend, and I deplore the smugness of rural supremacists. Self-mythologising is, in my view, a deadly sin.
In other news, the American author Diana Gabaldon has revealed that her best-selling Outlander books were inspired by seeing a Dr Who character wearing a kilt.
I have become used to the idea of throwing out books. In years gone by, I thought it almost tantamount to a crime.
Into the second week of my sojourn among the chickens. I’ve grown fond of the beasts, even if their behaviour is less than impeccable.
Well, my sojourn among the chickens is over and, of course, I am missing the little blighters.