The photo now heading my blog was taken by my brother, Sir Hugh, as I sat on the Bowder Stone a boulder the size of two-storey house adjacent to Buttermere in the Lake District. Detached from the human subject I find the photo sweetly composed. It has also profited from judicious cropping.
I'm pleased with the result. An "honest" portrait, I tell myself, given the well-defined turkey wattles, the leathery cheeks, the way the glasses partially obscure the eyes, and the slight sacklessness of my open mouth. The shirt - an old favourite - helps. Not pretty, not over-dignified but in no way a cliché. A man with a history slightly more interesting than the one I have actually endured.
(Top pic) Once, when I was much younger, I jumped naked from this bridge, a drop of about fifteen feet into the mercifully deep river below.
(Middle pic) The misty skyline here is that of the Sellafield spent nuclear fuel plant on the Lake District coast.
(Lower pic) Dead centre in this interaction of contours is Great Gable. A mountain.