Blog From the North – March 2015

Bunty Gunn
Bunty Gunn

I’m sitting here in the north of Scotland, waiting for the partial eclipse of the sun.  Having been told that this is one of the best places to see it, I am full of hope.  Early this morning there was a beautiful sun just waiting to be obscured by the moon, but now the clouds are rolling in (also predicted) and :I wonder how much of the actual moments we shall be able to see. If it happens before I finish this, I will let you know.

March came roaring in with gales and lashing rain.  We lost another tree – that makes ten, I think, this year.  Fields were waterlogged and lambing started with all those poor little newly borns getting wetter by the second.  Farmers up here hate early lambing in the rain.  Normally the lambs are organised to be later in Caithness and Sutherland because although the lambs can stand the cold, wet is something they succumb to and it is easy to lose everything you hoped for if the weather is bad.  On the other side, the daffodils are loving the damp conditions and edging into bloom.  I used to enjoy it when we lived in London and came north for Easter because we got two Springs.  Everything would be pretty well over down south and just coming to life up here.

It’s 9.30 a.m. and it is getting darker, but whether this is cloud cover or eclipse I can’t tell at the moment.  The sun is still shining on the fields, but the shadows are longer and, somewhat eerily, the wind has got up and the clouds are filling.  I need the lights on in the house.  A  flock of birds flew swiftly over, going home I imagine, but other than that there are no signs of any other birds.

Goodness!  Was that it?   Well.  There you go.  Apparently that was it.  Blink and you missed it.  Most disappointing.  I have to admit that I wanted Drama.  I wanted darkness over the face of the Earth. I wanted a sense of Otherness.   And what did I get?  Just a deep shadow.  What a let-down.

I have learned (later) that there were places where real darkness fell, so I feel a bit cheated.  And as the next eclipse is in 2026,  I must be contented with what I got today.

By the way, the Most Northerly Lemon is ripening slowly.  Very slowly.  It needs more sun.  So now that the moon has done her bit,  here’s hoping April will bring us warmth and light.  Happy Easter to everyone when it comes.

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