This summed up the weather today: some fine spells but the next bout of rain was never very far away. It also sums up the fact that I was at home and am going to remain here for much of the next eight weeks, so get used to photos of Hebden Bridge.
As a result of my travels down the years I have developed a theory that the general national psyche of particular places is in no insigificant way formed by its weather. A frequent British opinion is, ‘why expect good times to last? Something crap will inevitably come along soon’, and this is applicable both to our feelings about life in general but also the weather. You saw the picture — last Friday was a glorious day. Not any more, not a bit of it. This sun hat cowers under the rain-covered glass, very glad that it is not being worn.
Pleasant, dare I even say springlike, weather in Hebden this morning deluded me into going out inadequately dressed for the wintry crud which then afflicted Manchester all day. This shot was taken from my office window, looking down: minimising time outside seemed to be a good move all round. The bike rack is noticeably unused, too.
No apologies for returning to a theme touched on yesterday — this is the better shot. This was the view I saw on opening the curtains in the bedroom this morning. As it’s the last time I will do that at home until at least February 6th, this will keep me going for a while. The rising sun tinges the higher woodland on the Heptonstall hillside.
A dash into Manchester and back failed to trouble the camera, so let’s go with this one, there haven’t been many early morning shots for a while: it’s no longer a time of the day I engage with much, particularly in the winter. You’d think that some four weeks after the solstice the sun might deign to start putting in an appearance before 8am, but no, not in this valley anyway.
God, more of this crud. 2023 has not so far had vintage weather. But in a week’s time, I will be in the Southern Hemisphere, and whatever else goes on there, I’m damn sure the weather will be a lot warmer, and a lot lighter.
Took a different road home, at least between Edinburgh and Carlisle, and was rewarded with many magnificent landscapes, particularly with the mix of sun and cloud that characterised the day. Not that there were always places to stop the car and take advantage. Had I been able to stop on the Forth Bridge, I might have been able to capture the photo of the year (OK, I know it’s early in the year): sun rising behind the other two bridges, wreathed in mist etc. But this one will do, taken from the point at which the A701 starts its drop down into Annandale and the town of Moffat.
It was a nice sunny morning in Dundee, some 20 miles, as the crow flies, from where this picture was taken. I was not the only walker lulled into a false sense of weather security as a result. The damp splodges on this shot are unfortunate but, really, unavoidable. Anyway — here we all are on West Lomond, the highest point in the county (and ancient kingdom) of Fife. In the background, East Lomond, which I may haul myself up one of these days — but in better weather, I can assure you. (For more detail feel free to consult my County Tops blog.)
A bit of a cheap shot perhaps, but when one spends most of the day on a motorway, there aren’t always many opportunities. This does give a reasonable impression of the weather conditions in which the drive was done. Abington has become a ‘service station of choice’, purely because of timing: by the time we reach there, somewhere in the wilds of South Lanarkshire, there always seems to be the need for a drink, or lunch, or a pee. Sometimes all three.
Radiohead had a track on the Hail to the Thief album that basically screamed, ‘The raindrops!’ for a few minutes. I know the feeling. Train strikes don’t help either: there was no reason nor encouragement to leave the house today.
Taken at the same time as yesterday’s shot — and only five minutes after Monday’s. This is as near as I have ever got in 11 years to three consecutive shots at the same time of day. I swear I don’t do these things deliberately, even in the most boring periods.