Evidence comes in by dribs and drabs. Plenty of sightings, but the photographs are always teasingly ambiguous (or faked.)
And then there are the sea monsters.
What are these things? I want them to be plesiosaurs, but the weight of probability is against it. Loren Coleman (and he's the man) suggests that they're a rare breed of long necked seal. That really does cut them down to size.
I have been fascinated by them all my life. When I was a very small kid I has scared of paddling out into the sea in case a monster came swimming by.
Actually, that fear has never gone away.
I was never scared of sharks or jelly-fish or things like that- real things that posed a real threat. Only of these hypothetical things that posed a hypothetical threat.
There are no cases on record- not recent cases anyway- of lake or sea monsters hurting anyone. The threat is purely metaphysical. I'm afraid of them (and love them) because they're uncanny.
Things half seen, of indeterminate size and shape, slip-sliding through the dark.
What do they symbolise? Is it something to do with sex? Is it something to do with God?
I can't quite grasp it.
There's a chap about to go down into Loch Ness with a state of the art submarine. Perhaps he'll come back with a long-necked seal on a leash.
I so hope he does.
I so hope he doesn't.