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Category: Sky

Albion

Albion

This has been a strange year so far; stranger than usual, with Leicester City at football, the Brexit vote and the new PM (and the new Foreign Secretary), and Trump poised to become POTUS. Huh. Though, picking at “Why X did Y” threads, these things become less surprising. For context, go and see Hell or High Water for some thought-provoking content about why people sometimes vote in ways that may not make clear sense. Or, read Deer Hunting with Jesus,…

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The summer of 2016

The summer of 2016

It has been a good summer; so far, anyway. There have been meetings in nice towns. Sunsets. Many walks in the countryside. Some Nordic food shopping. More walks. Trees. Convivial conversations. More sunsets. Moon rises. Cricket. Some writing. And unexpected music. I have been, and remain (using that word pointedly), disinclined to “blog” or write much of a non-work nature. The EU referendum has poisoned much, and my thoughts and vision lie increasingly elsewhere. Maybe some other time. In the…

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Summer of 2015

Summer of 2015

My on-off personal project to sort out the colossal mess of online “stuff” is back in “on” mode. And with it, here’s some digital ephemera from the summer just gone. First up, the Flickr set of 260 pictures. This was my third entire summer in the USA, this time stretching from early May to early August. Apart from being bookended by a few days in Chicago, pretty much all of this was spent in central, and rural, Iowa. As with…

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West and south and west again

West and south and west again

A walk doesn’t have to be of Appalachian Trail length to be epic. This evenings was but four miles long. I leave base and walk in the direction of Wisconsin. Hit a junction, turn and walk in the direction of Minnesota. Pass a church, bright sign welcoming or enticing; pass a softball park, and new houses, rich and bland and slightly ridiculous and a little isolated by absurd lawns. A crossroads. I turn towards Nebraska. I hit an area of…

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When winter leaves

When winter leaves

The end, finish, conclusion of winter in the Northern Hemisphere is a matter of conjecture, opinion and history. BBC weather tells us that winter ends today, February 28th, meteorologically. Some say it ends at the vernal or spring equinox, which this year is March 20th. Some say it’s when the clocks go forward and we suddenly have daylight and sunlight well into the evenings. Sometimes we just notice things that indicate a change of season. And some, in Boston, doubt…

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The walk of two seasons

The walk of two seasons

That was a strange one. I was supposed to work all day today, but I woke just before dawn because of the cold. Winter, still. But then noticed how clear and gradually cobalt blue the sky was. And so, by breakfast it was a case of “Dammit!”, laptop off, hiking shoes on, stuff thrown into overbag, and out the door. This time I tried a few new paths heading straight south, but the second one did not exist; not for…

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Winter, arrives, in England

Winter, arrives, in England

Observations of the outside, this evening. As tweets, originally. + + + + + That warm autumnal yesterday, shunted, fronted away by the tail of the storm. Winter enters, for the clocks to fall back in a hundred hours. The fourth quarter slides in. The quiet countdown to Christmas, the silent worries of relative visits; that micro-social etiquette of cards. Dinnertime darkness. Signs for bonfires protestingly tug at fastenings with each gust. Cyclists slowly strain and wince into the headwind….

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Overhead

Overhead

The ISS appeared again this evening. No longer smothered by the glow of city lights, I watched it from the countryside as it rose and soared, bright and clear, floating silently, constantly, almost overhead. This sight will never pale; in a world that seems relentlessly broken it’s a reminder that, occasionally, our flawed species can produce something great. And make the International Space Station we did; centuries of science culminating in an almost impossible craft. 240 feet long, 990,000 pounds…

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An intermission of rural England

An intermission of rural England

Rural England is a small place. All of England to start with is smaller than most US states, and can fit into Scandinavia many times over. Take out the cities, take out the airports, the motorways and main roads, the growing suburbs and industrial sites, and you aren’t left with a huge amount of area. Set your mind to it and in a few days you could walk across its width; in a few weeks, its length. But, what there…

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The Long Autumn

The Long Autumn

The summer fruits, the Victoria plums and Cambridge strawberries, are the sweetest and juiciest, filled with the rains of spring. But it’s the autumn fruits, those slow-growing crops such as Marjorie’s Seedling, Russet and Cox’s Orange Pippin, where the flavors are strongest and the colors deepest. It’s strange. There’s a party going on downstairs, but I feel flat today, unsociable. Not grumpy, just tired, withdrawn, wanting to move on in several ways. So while the party goes on, and I…

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