Lillian Beckwith is one of my favourite authors. When we were up in Bangor Northern Ireland earlier in December I was browsing in a 2nd hand bookshop and came across this one by her. It was first published in 1986. I didn’trecognize the title or the cover. I suspected that I had read it before but I decided that even if I had, it was worth reading again. And sure enough it was. Lillian Beckwith is better known for some of her other books about life in the Hebrides. More famous ones include The Hills is Lonely and The Sea for Breakfast. In the front of the book there is a small list of phrases in the Scottish form of the native languages of the British Isles. These phrases are similar to Irish Gaeilge. To quote Wikipedia, there are “three Goidelic languages (Irish, Scottish Gaelic, and Manx)”.
As the sun shone in to our conservatory I took great pleasure in reading another Haruki Murakami book, After Dark. This was a splendid book, possibly my favourite so far.
Shortly before Christmas our Book Group met and we had a quiz. There were a possible 26 points, I think. My winner got a score of 17. I think I came dismally last with a score of 6. This was very bad – usually I like quizzes. The only consolation to me was that I might have tied with the quizmaster’s wife, who also would normally do very well on her husband’s quizzes. I was really envious when I saw the prize for the winner. A book authored by the quizmaster himself and just published. The Irish Post Box by Stephen Ferguson. Over the past few months I have been taking pictures of post boxes and wondering about their history – here was just the book for me. Stephen very kindly sent me one for Christmas. In another entry I’ll show you some of my pictures of post boxes and tell you some of the history as gleaned from Stephen’s book