Sunday, 8 April 2012

Phone a Far-Flung Friend [1]

Willing Sacrifice : The Preston Passion
Preston bus station.
See Progress to Preston [4] (read again)
           the fat bus bloke          
A Passion for Correct Answers?

To Tollcross via Orkney and Wight
One of the options, if you get stuck, on the "Who Wants to be a Millionaire" quiz show is to "Phone a Friend" ...
... who, the contestant fervently hopes, will be able to answer the troubling question.
So it was that Jean, staying with family on Orkney, chose to phone the fat bus bloke, resident on the Isle of Wight, for advice on a proposed bus journey in Glasgow! For the anecdotally aware, this represents the longest distance enquiry fbb has ever received from any of his varied acquaintances.

Well, actually, she sent an e-mail which, sadly, avoided the application of attractive alliteration!
Jean would fly (in a plane!) from Orkney (top) to Glasgow (bottom) ...
... and the take the Shuttle bus from the airport ...
... to the vast and well-appointed Buchanan bus station, on the northern edge of Glasgow City Centre.

Thus is was that Jean emailed her "friend" with this apparently simple question.

"What is the best way to get from Buchanan bus station to Newtongrange Avenue, Tollcross?"

Tollcross is on the ancient road between Glasgow and Hamilton which begins at Glasgow Cross in the City Centre.
Gallowgate (the city gate where the gallows were), that ancient road, is hardly beautiful today ...
... but nearer to Tollcross are rows of magnificently restored Glasgow "tenements" bult of the pink-brown sandstone that once turned black from industrial pollution and gave Glasgow its gloomy and dirty image.
This is the "centre" of Tollcross today (very roughly Google's point "A" on the map below) ...
... and this was taken about 1900 from a similar position (note the gable roof on the right).
Jean's target destination, however, Newtongrange Avenue ...
... is actually at the bottom right hand corner of the map extract, near the lower of the B765 labels and some distance beyond the old high street.
Unfortunately, although fbb has visited Glasgow on numerous occasions, his world-famous encyclopaedic knowledge of the geography and bus routes of the Scottish capital (?) is not as good as it should be.
So let's ask Traveline Scotland. The official revelation of timetabular truth should give us an answer. As usual, the big question is, "do we get the correct answer?".
The official revelation of truth should give us an answer. As usual, the big question is, "do we get the correct answer?"

As a small group of women trod carefully the path to the tomb where their crucified hero lay, two thoughts were uppermost in their minds. Firstly they had to perform the ritual cleansing and anointing of the body to fulfil the Jewish law's demands, a task unfinished due to the pre-Sabbath haste of the entombment.
Secondly, how would they move the slice of Jerusalem rock rolled across the mouth of the tomb?

Both problems were spectacularly resolved as ...
... the rock was rolled to one side and the tomb was empty.

However unwilling we may be to recognise the miracle of the Resurrection, that empty and unguarded tomb remains a fact far more reliably attested that many other "historical" events which we are happy to accept as truth.

What is most significant is that, in 2000 years of history and research, no credible alternative to the Resurrection revelation has been successfully proposed. At best we are left with an "incredible" truth or a series of even dafter and less credible alternatives**.

After all, to stamp out Resurrection rumours, all the authorities would have needed to do is to produce the body. Any body would do. Not one syllable of near-contemporaneous documentation, however obscure, has ever recorded such a debunking attempt. Even Christ's sworn and fervent enemies were stuck with that empty tomb.
And if friends and enemies of Christ alike found nothing in the tomb, then there is absolutely and undoubtedly ...
... something to think about in the Resurrection story ...
** Alternatives:-
Body removed
Not dead
An over-emotive vision
Wrong tomb
All easily supported by producing a body, alive or not!

Resurrection Joy : The Preston Passion
at Preston Bus Station
 Next blog : Monday 9th April 


  1. Terrific threading together of transport and theology evoking an excellent Easter extravaganza.

    May the joy of Easter be with you always

  2. Love the cartoon!

    Watched PP on PVR! Enjoyed but seems views were mixed.