'The Boswells Connection'... Two Thinkers

'The Boswells Connection'... Two Thinkers

On Saturday 25th May we’ll be launching a book of fictional stories linked to Boswells written by Oxford Inc, a group of writers who compile stories around a common theme. Seeing as May is ‘Share a Story Month’ we’re posting the start of a couple of the stories over the next few weeks to give you a taste of what’s to come.

We hope you enjoy them!

If you’re tempted to know the ending and read the other varied stories then do come into store and purchase a copy of the book from Saturday 25th May. Four of the authors, including Geoff Bremble whose story is below, will be with us from 11am to 2pm on the Saturday to sign your copies of the book. We have lots of other events planned for that weekend too so join our mailing list or follow us on social media to keep updated.

 

Two Thinkers

Geoff Bremble

8 June 1933, Oxford

It was late morning and the professor had at last completed the final draft of the lecture he was to give at Rhodes House. He was staying in rooms in Christchurch and had developed the habit of taking a walk along Cornmarket Street at around midday. He was in the company of James Harvey who had been assigned by the University to look after his needs during his stay in Oxford. They were now in the first-floor restaurant in Boswells department store looking out onto Broad Street and across to Saint Mary Magdalen church. Over the last few days he had observed a rough looking man walking with a distinct limp towards him past the church and pulling a small trolley. Its contents were covered by a well-used tarpaulin and, strapped to the trolley, were a couple of long rods both of which had at one end some sort of net.

‘James, see zat man down there, pulling zat trolley. He’s been doing zat at ze same time each day we’ve been here. Any idea why?’ the professor said in a deep guttural voice.

James Harvey leaned over and looked out, ‘He’s a fisherman on his way to the river. I know him, poor chap. He lost a leg in the Great War and has never really recovered from his ordeal. But nice enough.’

‘I vould like to go and vatch him fishing. Vould zat be alright?’

‘Well you’ve nothing fixed for the rest of today, so why not follow him. But don’t disturb him or you might get a mouthful.’

‘A mouthful? I don’t understand.’

‘You will when you get it,’ laughed Mr Harvey standing up, ‘quick, you had better go or you’ll lose him.’

The professor went down the stairs out onto Broad Street and, from a distance, followed the man down George Street. After about ten minutes and having reached Hythe Bridge he paused for a few moments to take in the feverish activity on the Canal Wharf to his left. There were barges lined up on the canal waiting for their turn to offload their goods before turning round to make the return journey north. Further beyond he could see the outline of Castle Hill which he had visited a few days earlier.  After a moment or two he continued over the bridge, crossing the canal and the river Isis. It was then that he nearly lost sight of the fisherman but, looking to the right, he spotted him 50 yards or so along Upper Fisher Row starting to set up his equipment for the task ahead. After about ten

minutes the man was ready and seated on the river bank. The professor watched as he flicked the baited hook upstream before allowing it to float slowly back towards him only to flick it back up once more. Eventually a fish took a bite causing the line to tighten as it made attempts to escape. The fisherman, engrossed in what he was doing, quietly reeled his catch to the bank manoeuvring it into his catching net and then in to the holding net. He began to re-bait the hook and the professor, seeing his opportunity, stepped down from the bridge and walked towards him.

 

We hope you're as excited as we are! 'The Boswells Connection' out on the 25th May...

Posted by Sam Mansell
10th May 2019

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