The Phillips

Yesterday we went into Cullen to visit the Cullen house and estate (part of the setting for Malcolm by George MacDonald). While we were on the estate a woman told us we should see the old kirk (church). When we told the minister of the church that we were there seeing George MacDonald sites she asked, “so you’re here with Mike?” We were a little puzzled. She clarified, “Michael Phillips.”

Michael Phillips has edited a great deal of George MacDonald’s to make them more accessible to the modern reader. His publishing company also publishes unabridged copies of MacDonald’s writings. He also writes his own fiction (some of which Mom and Dad have read).

The minister took our cellphone number and left. We stayed in the church and were given a tour by another lady there. Parts of the church date from the early 1200s.

As we were leaving the church we were met by Mrs. Phillips. Mr. Phillips was out biking. Mrs. Phillips showed us around the outside of Cullen house connecting what we saw with the book. She then offered to walk us down to the coast to a cave mentioned in the book. We had a nice four mile walk with Mrs. Phillips and saw some beautiful coast.

On our return we got to meet Mr. Phillips. He was impressed with our interest in seeing Huntly, Cullen, and other things connected with George MacDonald. We exchanged names, shook hands, took a group picture, and said good bye.

Good surprise. Fun Providence.

We (excluding Mom and Dad) then went to Findlater Castle. Findlater Castle (also mentioned in Malcolm) is an old ruined castle last inhabited in 1600. It sits on a tongue of rock that juts out into the ocean. The base of the castle starts at the top of 60ft cliffs. We were able to climb around and through it. Exploring old ruins is fun!


G Mac

Wednesday we went to Huntly, the birthplace of George MacDonald. We saw his birthplace, his childhood home, his church, and his school. We also saw some buildings that make appearances in some of his fictional works.

We then went to Cullen, the setting for Malcolm (one of my favorite George MacDonald books). It made me want to spend a long time exploring the area, finding things that reminded me of the book. It made me wish I’d read the book more recently so I could place things better.

Nathanael and I decided to walk home from Cullen along the coast. The first two miles were beautiful. The coast was rocky and again made me want to spend time exploring, but there wasn’t a lot of extra time, and I was dressed in flip flops and shorts (not having planned to do a lot of walking). Among other exciting sites, we saw dolphins.

The last mile or so was still pretty, but the walk got less enjoyable. The little narrow shelf between cliffs and sea disappeared so we had  to walk along the top of the cliffs. I didn’t know God had invented so many different prickly plants. I had to tread very carefully, and even so, I bled a little. Silly me and my flip flops and shorts.

Written by Micah in: United Kingdom | Tags: , , , ,

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