Sunday, April 23, 2006
Out For The Count
Whitby Abbey was the setting for part of Bram Stoker's 'Dracula' novel. The Count arrived in Whitby during a tremendous storm and legend has it that his boat was wrecked on 'Tate Hill Sands' which nestle beneath the ruins of the Benedictine monument. Each year thousands of 'Goths' convene in the Town clad in all manner of magnificent black finery and teutonic attire. So this weekend is 'Goth weekend' and we decided to take a walk to the Abbey to witness this strange phenomenon. As we approached the Abbey plain we noticed a small crowd gathered overlooking tate Hill Sands below to witness a rare spectacle - a 'Gothic funeral'. One of their number(the brother of a high profile politician no less) had sadly died and had requested that he be given a traditional Viking ceremony here in Whitby.
His ashes were placed aboard a replica of a Viking Longboat and a large crowd gathered on the sands awaiting the rising tide to float the vessel. Flaming arrows were then fired on to the boat from the shore and the blaze slowly sunk the craft. Despite the solemnity, there was, as was his wish, laughter, rogueish tomfoolery... and the flutter of batwings all around . Rest In Peace Sir.