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My last day on the Isle of Man, I explored Douglas a bit more and did some shopping. The same cab driver that gave me the inside scoop upon arrival was again my ride back to IOM. On this passage, he told me stories about the world's largest online gambling company,, setting up shop on the island and the increased presence of secret service agents solely to monitor its financial activity. It was all quite fascinating. I was also fascinated by his innate ability to hold conversation looking at me in the backseat while navigating the winding, narrow roads. Decades of watching the island's famous TT races must have seeped into his subconscious intuitively letting him know every curve. 

We parted ways and he commented again on the "twang" in my accent and at how pleasant it was to drive a Canadian around for once. I had done my duty representing my home and native land in a friendly, polite manner. 

At IOM, I took some time to reflect upon my journey. I again felt like I accomplished a lot on this trip and could properly cross off another item from my bucket list (half of which are now complete in the two years since writing that post). What to do next? Where to go? I truly feel the world is my oyster. Being at this point in life is an accomplishment in and of itself. 

On a final note, I did discover more about the mysterious R.A.K. Clague, whose name I found on a World War II memorial inside St. Paul's Cathedral, London. The Librarian at the church has been very helpful in providing further information. I am not sure if they are a direct relative, but this other instance of fate is important for me to note. 

His name was Rupert Clague. I do not have an exact age but he was a member of the St. Paul's Cathedral Choristers from 1931 - 1935. He later joined the Royal Navy and was killed in action during World War II (date of death is September 27, 1941). The following poem is attributed to his hand: 

"The cloud I see is like a rose,
With morning sun behind it.
I gaze as it before me blows
And beautiful I find it."

Rupert Clague, circled. Date unknown.

Cair Vie*

Moghrey Mie
Good morning in the Manx language

The next morning upon waking up from slumber, I made myself a cup of Cadbury cocoa and watched as numerous people strolled along Douglas Bay. My cab driver from the previous afternoon was correct; there was a different pace of life here. A slower, more personable one. It was a Monday but the Manx Museum and shopping district of the capital would not be open until 10:00am. The sun had risen but the roads were still nearly deserted. There was no hustle-and-bustle. There was no rat race. Just dogs chasing sticks in the sand. I could live here. 

I paused and enjoyed the view, thinking of bloodlines that had come before and imagining what propelled them to leave and settle elsewhere. From this jade jewel in the Irish Sea, I somehow came to being in Canada. 

Fastyr Mie
Good afternoon in the Manx language

I eventually checked out of my hotel and made my way to the Manx Museum. The 10,000 year history of the island is explored through film, galleries and interactive displays and, like all museums in London, has free admission. I did thoroughly enjoy the Manx National Art Gallery display, as well as the Viking and Victorian-era artefacts, but the non-linear flow of the museum was confusing. One minute, I was learning about the famous TT races. The next I walked into an exhibit on primitive man. The next I was learning about the Depression-era economy. I did pick up a "Pocket Manx" guidebook on the basics of the language, which was a neat souvenir. 

I didn't learn a lot about my surname at the museum but further research has informed me that the family name dates to ancient times, perhaps exceeding the Norman Conquest (11th Century). The name is patronymic in origin and is an anglicanization of the Gaelic name Mac Liagh denoting "the son of Liaigh", from the Irish word "liaigh" meaning "physician".

As late as 1986, Clague was the ninth most common name on the Isle of Man, although there weren't as many as I expected in the Yellow Pages. Perhaps a hundred or so. Clague is the original Manx spelling; "Clegg" is the assimilated English version. 

Our family crest is an eagle rising argent. 

Oie Vie
Good night in the Manx language

*Safe journey in the Manx language