My last couple of posts have not been light-hearted. I took you for a walk across a stark and austere landscape. I invited you to read a number of stark and austere books. Since Jude’s Life in Colour is all about gold this month, I thought I’d hunt out – not very original of me, I know – a few sunrises and sunsets. These can get their golden vibe by being yellowish rather than reddish, but they’re gleaming, resplendent, hopeful, bright.
My featured photo, and the one below come from L’Albufera de València, a natural freshwater lagoon that is home to thousands of birds – and fish too of course. Its sunsets are a wonder on any day of the year. But I particularly like the understated dirty-golden glow in these two shots.
Travelling’s tough these days. Better to stay local and get up early, and enjoy the sunrise just near the house. These two shots show our river, the Ure, at daybreak in spring.
Or just a little later, in the parkland of Sleningford Hall …
You’d still sooner be abroad? Best take a ferry then …
And we’ll head straight for Granada. We might get there just in time for the sunset.
I didn’t plan to post today, but since I shared my sundown stroll with you last week, it seems selfish not to share the delight of a bright sunrise walk this morning. I left the house at 6.20, going along the River Ure, up the hill to a neighbouring farm, and back through the grounds of Sleningford Hall.
Peaceful? Not at all. The rooks in the rookery were circling their home patch and gossiping loudly. Oyster catchers gathered in groups and screamed and called as they flew high above the river while others skimmed its surface. A single curlew called. The lark ascended. And though the dawn chorus was all but over, blackbirds on every other tree took up their posts to offer an unending programme of melody to the morning sun. Lambs bleated plaintively as I passed, while their mothers’ objections were even more assertive. Only the rabbits, off to bed for the day, were silent as they swished through the dewy grasses.
Winter’s not all bad. The day begins well for us. Winter light. If we push breakfast just a little bit later than usual – just before 8 o’clock say – we can watch the sun rise, and the sky lighten and brighten in Neapolitan ice-cream colours as we sit near the kitchen window and chomp through our cereal.
Go outside in the daylight, and we can enjoy the snowdrops, and watch green shoots thrusting through the soil.
The trees are handsome, statuesque as they thrust their naked branches skyward.
Long shadows reach across the fields in the thin, clear January light.
And back in the house … there’s still some Christmas cake left in the tin.