I am moved by Lady Percy 's expression of love. CLICK HERE - see if you agree.
Otherwise my novels, short stories, verse, family, music, memories, vulgar interests, detestations,
responses, apologies. I hold posts to 300 words* having found less is better than more.
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* One exception: short stories.

Thursday, 19 September 2013

To the victor the spoils

Gorgeous woman kisses modern-day hero. Why not? She's his wife. Pretty good kiss, eh? The poliziotto seems to think so.

The kissee is Nick Sloane who masterminded the first stage of salvaging the huge cruise liner Costa Concordia beached on an Italian island. That Nick Sloane!

Can a man be a hero just for doing his job? Yes. Presently he's garlanded with media approval. Suppose the ship had broken in two and spilled its mess? Being approved is the other side of being blamed. And the media are good at blaming.

Also he's an engineer who will spend over half a billion quid shifting the Concordia. Ten years ago I reckoned engineers were under-appreciated, certainly in fiction. Last year I finished a novel with engineers central to the plot. Nick Sloane has shown they can hold your attention.

I won't summarise the salvaging; Google does that. Just two points: the scale (It took several hours just to pre-tension the cables doing the pulling.) and the ingenuity (Vast water-filled boxes welded to the ship's exposed flank helped - by their weight - bring the ship upright; emptied they'll add to its bouyancy.)

That, folks, is engineering. The man who repairs your dish washer or attaches a new silencer to your car is not an engineer.

 WIP Second Hand (36,711 words)

Nneoma interrupted. “... Tell us about yourself, Francine. Your name for instance. It’s beautiful. Where did it come from?”

“It has French roots. Popular in the States fifty years ago. It’s always sounded manufactured to me; I’d have preferred Francoise. Better still, Nneoma.”

“Silly! ...”


  1. Would you class surgeons (in particular orthopaedic) as engineers?

  2. Sir Hugh: Their case is slightly different; they can if they wish describe themselves as engineers but beyond that they only qualify as co-heroes. With their patients, of course.