Liberation Day

St Andrew's Cathedral. Copyright@2013 Catherine Rodgers Giussani
My family and I spent the last four days in Scotland.  I traded electronic devices for iconic vices:  butter shortbread, aged single malt whisky, dark beer on tap, haggis, neeps and tatties.

When we got off the train at Leuchars I expected to come across a fully operational Presbyterian mecca, and straight away we did and went in for a cup of tea and like old parishioners fought for the best baked goods and chatted with the locals.  The roots of my roots were taking quickly.  We walked through the university where at the shore of the North Sea I expected to find an enormous Catholic cathedral and stumbled on to this...

I was so happy to see ruins which to me were more hallowed ground than any church.  It is a symbol of independence and self-governance. It is not the historic value of the place that appeals to me so much but more why it was destroyed.  The townspeople saved themselves through their reactionary rage.  

Inspired by radical revered John Knox, the townspeople dismantled the church in the 16th century after finding out that the Bishop had squandered church funds on lavish parties, without inviting them, and fathered 20 illegitimate children.  The town took back the brick and limber of the cathedral when it could no longer serve them.  Where, when, why, who, and how exactly the re-building took place isn't as important as to the fact that they actually took the matter into their own hands, quite literally. 

Loving the modern era and all its means of communication, I gained appreciation for the 16th century. Why is it today we are more concerned with tips about technology than how to take back a town?