Spectacular landscape #2 of 2. The Black Isle — which is a peninsula rather than an island — has never been seen by me before but turns out to be spectacularly beautiful, a smorgasbord of photo opportunities. I did my best to pick one that summed up all this.
Today I, and around 250 other people, walked from Arnside to Grange-over-Sands — an easy, flat walk of about 5.5 miles. The complication is that between these two places lies the northern reach of Morecambe Bay, the largest expanse of intertidal land in Great Britain. But in that also lay the fun of the day — the chance to (safely) get a couple of miles away from permanently dry land, into a space that is neither one thing nor the other, a limbo state between land and sea — with a healthy dose of sky, too.
I deliberately cranked up the contrast on this shot because I like the way that all the people look like dashes of paint descending from a horizon that is insubstantial but definitely there. As if we are trapped within a sheet of glass, aware of the heavens above us but unable to reach them.
Brighton is still in the top ten of this blog’s most-depicted locations, but hasn’t been seen since February 2018, until yesterday anyway. There are reasons why I should regain the habit of coming here. How much longer the old West Pier will last before collapsing entirely into the sea, no one knows for sure, but the ruins will doubtless feature on many people’s photos before they do.
Jamestown is one of the very few places in St Helena where you can actually get down to sea level, and that, plus its place on the leeward side of what can be a rather windy island, is why the town is there. There’s no actual harbour, though. The boats and yachts congregate out to sea, and this evening, caught a few rays.
I have to move into different accommodation for the last few days of my stay and am unlikely to get internet access for the remaining time here; so the next few days probably won’t be uploaded until I get home on December 2nd. See you then.
OK, it’s time to do the main panorama from my place of incarceration. The movie director in my head would still prefer to wait for the lighting to be just so, but to be honest, breaks in the cloud have been rare this last week — indeed, as I type this on Wednesday morning, it’s raining heavily and none of this can be seen at all.
To the left, Ladder Hill, depicted in close up a few days ago. Below it, tucked in its valley, Jamestown, the capital and one of the few places on the island where one can actually land a boat. To the right, Rupert’s Valley, more industrial (i think those are fuel pipelines visible) — between them, Munden’s Hill. All to be more intimately explored at a later date. In the direction shown, the next land is, I calculate, the Ivory Coast, or perhaps Ghana, at least 1,800 miles away.
Clare and (for the third time in four days) Joe amble along the rim of the country. To the left, nothing until Dieppe in France. To the right, the town of Hastings, home for the next few nights. The evenings draw in, but summer remains with us.
An all-too-welcome excuse to get out and about was offered today — yes Mr Johnson it counted as ‘essential travel only’, so call off the wolves. The destination was a new one for me, Fleetwood, standing at the corner of Morecambe Bay and thus with a magnificent view that could not possibly be captured in a single camera shot. This one’s OK, I like it because of the fishermen (appropriate for the town, whose football team, Fleetwood Town, are known as the ‘Cod Army’) and also the bird which gives a nice touch. The weather was a lot better than it looks here, too. Anyway — an escape, for a while.
A burst of freedom. As we are allowed to visit family at the present time — under conditions of whatever — we had a day trip to the great gash in the landscape that is Morecambe Bay. On the other side, Grange-over-Sands. The figures seen on the tidal flats are presumably a family: but even if they’re not, what business is it of mine.
Reykjavik was fun and — after the first 30 hours or so — sunny and quite warm, but what we saw there could, to be honest, have been seen anywhere. Time to get out in the wilds. This morning we flew to Akureyri in the north of Iceland, picked up a car and headed further north still, and on the road between Dalvik and Ólafsfjör∂ur, there came this scene. I tried hard to get all four things in the viewfinder — the sheep, the island of Hrisey to top left, the mountain, the waterfall; although one result is that this almost looks like I’ve taken the halves of two photos and mashed them together. But I still like it. This is what was hoped for…. Now all that is needed is some volcanic activity. But that stereotype can be sought out tomorrow.
I’ll tell you what though — of all the pictures I have taken in July, whether they appeared on this blog or not, this is definitely the coldest. I would say it was about 5ºC at this point and virtually sleeting. The sheep must be used to it, I guess: they look contented enough.
24 hours in Holyhead, Anglesey, planned around the enjoyment of two of my principal leisure pursuits. The footie was yesterday, the walk today. As you can see, the weather was… pretty decent. I seem not to be able to resist the temptation to collect places, and for a while have been preparing to set out to bag the highest points in all the counties of Great Britain, and with Holyhead Mountain, this, almost accidentally, kicks it off… so out spurts another blog, which you may or may not like to check out. While you’re here though, is it me or does that trig point look like the robot from The Day the Earth Stood Still?