We hit the tarmac running. The chopper blades still turning, we ran through the smells of half burned aviation fuel and rain under a sky so low it looked like the ceiling of a hospital room.
We claimed our bags and jumped in a taxi for the railway station.
When the sun is out Aberdeen can look like some slightly grim town out of faerie: the granite sparkles and accentuates the fanciful touches of the architecture. The delicate crenelations along the top of a terrace of shops; the impractical turretts on a dour family home.
On days like this one the city looks like it was carved out of heavy dark cloud: at any time it could collapse into vast pools of dirty water.
We caught the train.
"I anticipated a greater degree of total non-linearity there my friend," said Shawn.
"We dodged bullets both metaphorical and psychological, although thankfully not literal."
East Scotland raced past outside the window. Wasted little towns, falling apart as we passed.
"Indeed, Shawn," I said, "although adopting speech patterns that are both geek and 19th century southern English is unlikely to earn friends in those who eavesdrop."
Thin layers of soil on cracked rock. Constant low-level, wind pushed rain that hits like hard radioactivity.
[to be continued ...]