A Great Storm

It’s the thirtieth anniversary of The Great Storm today. It puts me in mind of a time I was in a storm. Not the Great one. Just a storm.

I was living in Plymouth at the time, and I’d been visiting friends across town. The wind had been picking up for a few hours, and it was getting late, so it was time to head home.

Wandering out, I was struck by the force of the wind, and it was propelling me forward, holding me back, or tossing me sideways, depending on which direction I was heading. It wasn’t raining, and the wind actually felt rather warm, even as it blew debris around that could easily have smacked me in the head.

And yet, I felt rather elated.

Comfortable almost.

It should have been scary. It should have been dramatic. Yet, it was peaceful, even as I wandered down an alley that was funnelling the wind even faster. I was almost tempted to lift my coat over my head and use it as a sail, like I used to as a child. I didn’t though, because even though I was having a nice time, I realised that might throw me into Cornwall.

It’s a hard feeling to describe, other than maybe it felt like coming home after a long absence.

It was only later that I learned my Dad was in Plymouth that night too. He had been sailing, and they’d been forced into harbour to avoid the winds. This was before mobile phones, so there was no way of knowing this, but I do wonder if him being nearby somehow engendered the whole comfortable feeling.


, , ,
Buy My Books
  • Proctology: A Bottom Examination
    Proctology: A Bottom Examination

    For a long time now I’ve been wanting to write an old-fashioned programme guide. One you can hold in your hand and thumb through, make notes on, spill coffee on. So I did. Proctology: A Bottom Examination is my deep dive into Bottom, the hit BBC Two sitcom starring Rik Mayall and Adrian Edmondson. That’s…

Most Read
  • Re-Casting Keanu
    Re-Casting Keanu

    Keanu Reeves is 56. That makes him eight years older than Clive Dunn was when he was first cast in Dad’s Army. But don’t panic, Clive Dunn was always playing much older characters than his own age. Keanu Reeves is 56. That makes him seven years older than Stephanie Cole was when she was first…

From The Archive

Sign up for my FREE newsletter