At first the path seems clear with some light on it but as the slope grows steeper, mist comes around it and then, farther, the top is covered in cloud and I have no idea what I’ll find there.
Although we were only there for a year or so, I say I grew up on the beach in Santa Monica, because it’s where I was happy or, at least, in hindsight, think that’s what I was. We moved there when I was just four. Prior to that my mother, nurse Mary, and I moved around a lot, every six months from one small house in the Hollywood or Beverly Hills to another.
At first, when I was young, my mother told me my father had left us to go back to Ireland to work for the Irish Red Cross. He had been fund-raisong for the Red Cross during his time in America.
Edward Lindsay-Hogg, English-born, had become an Irish citizen in the mid-1930’s. He liked living there because I think England frightened him, or his memories were too painful. The grandson of baronet Sir Lindsay Lindsay-Hogg, a tough old man whose family had made money in the China trade, he was the son of an invalid father whose back had been broken in a hunting accident and a nervous clinging mother, and his older brother was vicious, if not a little demented. Brutal years at Eton did not help a temperament already somewhat fragile. Then, when he was seventeen, it was my father who, his mother late from returning from being out with the hunt, mounted his horse and went in search of her. He found her body in a stream, her foot still in the stirrup. Her horse hadn’t budged from the narrow slatted sideless bridge, from which she’d fallen or been thrown.