I shared these photos in a recent Steller story called ‘pink‘, and as I’m sitting at my desk on this last Friday of January, listening to the rain, on a day that has been endlessly grey, I thought I’d share these pink-toned skies and dramatic clouds here too. Just as a reminder that skies aren’t alway grey.
So, it’s a new year, and, let’s be honest, it’s been quite the first week in terms of news. But here we are, we made it through 2020 and it is a new year. While possibilities may feel a little lean as I write this on January 8 with the UK in another lockdown, my default mode tends to be focussed on the many things to be grateful for. I realise that’s easy to write and harder to live, but our worlds will open again, even if we have more months to wait to see the impact of the vaccine rollout. It feels hard to wrap your head round the scale of this process at the moment, right? So I’m personally taking 2021 a week at a time and trying not to think too far ahead, and I wanted to start this new year with a simple post: a walk down the coast – at North Berwick – in some lovely light, which perhaps looks like nothing much, but, in these locked down days, it feels like a lot.
There’s no denying the shift in the seasons at the moment. Last week, you could feel the evenings slip away as it seemed to be getting darker day by day. To be honest, I’m ready for autumn; I’m ready for cool weather and bracing beach walks, but I’m never ready to lose evening light. And this year, we’ve appreciated our evenings even more. Lockdown shifted perspective, right? We’ve appreciated just being outdoors, whether keeping it local with walks at the ash lagoons or along the sea front, or those nights of just getting in the car and escaping down the coast.
It’s been just over a month since my last post, and I’m not sure how this happened. While it feels as if lockdown has lasted for a very long time indeed, when it comes to work and deadlines and cramming things into a week, June seemed to fly past. Anyone else feeling this? Lockdown has created a pattern where every piece of work has taken longer to do, and I was creating Steller stories too, so the blog took a backseat. But here we are on July 3, and this feels like a big date in Scotland as after all these weeks (almost fifteen weeks) of staying close to home, we can travel again. Just knowing that we can get in the car and go places, and return to our much-missed coastal walks, feels so good.
Weekends have been the strangest days for me during these lockdown weeks. Mondays to Fridays still have a familiar routine: I’m still mostly at my desk, looking for work, doing work, and then getting stuck in the creative things that I love, like Steller. But weekends are different. Weekends have always been about being outdoors; about getting in the car and escaping somewhere. What places are on your list to escape to once lockdown eases? I’m not talking about big trips or far flung adventures at this point; I’m looking some weeks ahead to phase 2 of our COVID-19 route map in Scotland when we can drive to places that are local. For me, staying in East Lothian, my top three would be John Muir Country Park, Yellowcraig at low tide, and this place, Ravensheugh Sands, near Tyninghame.
I’m sure most of us feel this way, but this lockdown period has really highlighted the things that are most important in my life. I realise this will mean different things for different people, particularly those who are missing their family and friends, but for me this means: my little family, both canine and human; taking photos (always, as I mentioned in my previous post); being out in nature (taking photos); getting on my yoga mat regardless of how I’m feeling, because ten minutes into practice, you remember why it is that you practice; and tech, because six weeks of sharing a MacBook with my other half in our new shared WFH life pretty much clarified how important tech is every day.