Stormy Weather

surfing at wiseman's bridgeThe recent storms have produced some remarkably big waves. The photo shows surfing at Wiseman’s Bridge – it was impressive, and continued for a couple of days in big waves. The waves trip over the rocks on the west side of the beach and so are relatively regular. It does need a fair sized swell but this swell was rather bigger than the usual. There were quite a few surfers out there on small boards. It’s not a wave that occurs particularly regularly and rarely in the nice months. It’s a mid to high tide wave and the tide was reaching the sea wall when this picture was taken so getting out isn’t absolutely simple – people were paddling on their boards along the beach to where the sand still is at high tide.

I’m finishing Roger Scruton’s Modern Philosophy: an Introduction. Very good as an introduction to philosophy – and surprisingly sympathetic to a wide cross section of opinion. There’s an excellent wittiness too which helps engage the reader with some of the more difficult areas of philosophy. Even the sections that were focussed on the more abstract areas of philosophy (e.g. logic, mathematical logic and analytical studies of sense and reference) were pleasantly light-hearted. Although gifted with an ability to be controversial and say things in a way sometimes guaranteed to annoy, mostly a matter of overstating his case, Scruton’s death leaves a sad gap in intelligent writing about philosophy, politics and the like. I’m also enjoying English Voices by Ferdinand Mount, even though it is just a collection of rather witty book reviews that have appeared in the TLS, etc. A bit of literary gossip can be, of course, very enjoyable. They are, of course, no substitute for reading the authors mentioned for yourself and making up your own mind. The author he has been nicest about has been Wilfred Owen so far – didn’t live long enough to offend perhaps.

My cycling is at a bit of a low ebb – especially given the weather – just a regular bike trip to go swimming in Tenby and Sunday rides when it’s not pouring, A recent Cycle Magazine article described a triple chainset as unfashionable, odd since that’s what touring bikes still mostly have. And since when did anyone with half a brain care about whether it was fashionable or not? It goes along with the phrase ‘walk of shame’ that’s used to describe walking up a hill. Why not get off and walk if you feel like it, even if you’ve got a wonderful triple chainset. As the rain pours down the hill I’m cycling up, I am indeed inclined to get off and walk, so there’s been a fair bit of walking recently. Some beautiful wild weather….

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