Tuesday, May 2nd 1933 offered a golden Scottish dawn for Mr. and Mrs. John Mackay. Perhaps they slept in, tangled up in each other and the sheets, a husband and wife deeply in love. Or maybe they arose early, read the paper, had a spot of tea, took a springtime stroll. The daily details of ordinary lives are not often remembered by history, and so it was for the Mackays.
But even the ordinary days of ordinary lives can suddenly bloom into something vibrant and altogether extraordinary. One sensational instant can bring the profound irrevocably crashing into the mundane. These are the moments that change the world, and this is the (much abridged) story of the Mackay’s moment, the birth of the modern legend of the Loch Ness Monster.
On this particular Tuesday, our couple of note went about the living of their lives in whatever small ways filled the hours. At some point, one or the other of them suggested a drive along the newly opened road that skirted the northern end of murky Loch Ness. Since it was 1933, this seemed like a really exciting idea and was quickly agreed upon.
The open road was a novelty of the moment, an engineering achievement that provided spectacular, never-before-seen views of the majestic lake. The Mackays likely drove slowly along the road, soaking up the scenery, feeling young and blessed to be alive and in love.
"Oh! Look at the birds!"
"Fine birds dear. Just lovely."
"And oh! The rolling hills!"
"Aye. The rolling hills indeed m’lass."
"Honey, what’s that in the water? An enormous animal rolling and plunging on the surface?"
"Wonderful lovey. An enormous animal rolling and plung…Wait, what? An enormous animal rolling and plunging on the surface? Good God woman! What unholy beast is that?"
And thus the legend of Nessie came crashing into the modern age. Hysteria ensued, a man named Marmaduke was enlisted to try to catch the monster, that same man got caught using a stuffed hippopotamus foot to fake tracks, and suddenly the world had a new, and ever-evolving tale to capture its collective imagination.
So this Wednesday, May 2nd, give yourself a moment to consider the tale of the Mackays. Take solace in knowing that no matter how boring your day may seem, you may just end up spotting Bigfoot. Fame through cryptozoology? Now THAT’S a reason to drink.
[techtags:Reason to Drink, Loch Ness Monster]