Monday, 22 June 2015
Tale of a Troll
High up on the moorland above Aviemore, far from the nearest human habitation, can be found this delightful little bridge. Spanning a narrow stream and nestled in a shallow valley, it sits in a location that can provide welcome respite from the rigours of the heather-clad, windswept moorland all around. Several times I have passed this way, en route to somewhere or other, and sat beside the singing brook for rest and refreshment. The charm of the location, its contrast with the surrounds, belies the fact that the arch beneath the bridge houses a space that is long, dark and narrow, with barely room for the waters to squeeze themselves through. There is another notable facet to the life and times of this characterful little bridge. It is the birthplace of Troll Salmond. It's a little-known story, but it goes like this......
Once upon a time, a family of trolls lived beneath our little bridge. They were proud rulers over the entire area. Little son troll was due to inherit the whole fiefdom. However, due to his excessive petulance and inability to get on with the other members of the family, he was disowned of his inheritance, thrown out from beneath the bridge, and banished from the trolldom. Full of bitterness and resentment, he made his way down the long winding track towards the lowlands, vowing as he did so to wreak revenge on this treacherous, wicked troll family of his.
He travelled far and wide. Eventually he arrived in the vicinity of the distant township of Aberdeen, where he saw his chance and grasped it like a succulent moorland herb. One evening, while supping ale in a local pub, he overheard two local fellows discussing wind farms. This, he realised, was the way in which he could take his revenge upon those who had rejected him so callously. He would destroy their homelands with wind turbines. Orwellian newspeak and doublethink came naturally to this newly-energised troll, and soon he was going about the nation with his wonderful message of saving the environment by destroying the environment. Such was the energy, charm, and charisma that he was able to convey through his persona that soon droves of people were flocking to hear him speak, and to back his grand plan to destroy the land and thereby save it.
One day, he saw his dreams coming true. A large multinational corporation forwarded their proposals to build a goodly number of wind turbines not five miles from the bridge and former home of Troll Salmond. This, surely, would bring misery to his disloyal family and force them from their peaceful home beneath the bridge not far from Aviemore. Many folk cried out in horror at these proposals, pointing out that these hills were places of great tranquility right on the edge of a national park, no less. The plans were last heard of being mooted by various minions of Troll Salmond down in the lowlands. Trolls leave no stone unturned: Troll Salmond has these minions well-versed in his ways, and is hopeful of success. Meanwhile, following his failure to establish his personal fiefdom of the north, he has headed south of the border to wreak havoc and confusion on the streets of the Big City.
Thus ends this chapter in the life of Troll Salmond, and how he is taking revenge on his homeland....