Monday, October 22, 2012

Something in the Water

It was such a rare and delicious golden day this late in October that even the wind sat back in silent amazement.  We headed into the West for a light supper in what used to be our local--a combination of nostlagia and celebration of the season.  October brings golden light onto the fields turning harvested fields an impossibly bright brass.  When I first saw oil colour paintings of the fields I thought the colours were all wrong and hopelessly brash.  My eyes needed seasoning.

Late afternoon comes early in October, so the shadows were already lengthening as we headed west, but we had time for a look at Portskerra.  With a little-used harbour now and below eye level from the main road, it would be easy to pass by Portskerra without unpacking her little secrets.  Her presence was revealed to me as gift from a friend whose friend had shared it with her.  When a friend from England came north, I took her to Portskerra--after all, gifts are for sharing.

When I took Lydia to Portskerra, the waves were wild and thrashing and splashing against the rocks; the tide was in, the wind was up.  She loved it. We walked carefully along the lower edge of the footpath over the hills, sometimes preferring the safer walking defined by the sheep's hooves nearby.  In contrast, today was so still that I ventured onto a cap of lichen clad rocks that I had never set foot on before and watched the sea idling below.

I followed the path along the coast from a small harbour used by local fishermen to the Portskerra Drownings Memorial.  Scotland has many memorials to those lost at sea.  This is one of the more poignant ones.  I always stop to read the names aloud as if to breathe them one more time into the safety of the harbour.
As I lingered watching the tide coming in and marvelling at how calm the waves were, I noticed something in the water.  Rocks and seals love interchanging roles, so my eyes tried to shape the odd somethings into seals, but the images did nto work.  Seals pop their heads up and disapear below the waves, sometimes plashing in toward the rocks. I have seen them play with each other and ride along the edges of waves, but these patterns on the horizon could not be made to obey these patterns, so I had to watch with new eyes.  Circling, arching gently upward and then through the water.  What my eyes could not quite resolve into a fin or a nose of seal looked more and more like a dorsal fin. A pod of porpoises had chosen this same quiet day to enjoy the waters of Portskerra.


At 9:38 AM, Blogger Ruan Peat said...

Oh what a lovely day to walk and wasnt the sky amazing at 8ish this morning! almost worth being awake for it!

At 7:14 PM, Blogger scorrie said...

good fotos // scorrie

At 7:14 PM, Blogger scorrie said...

good fotos // scorrie


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