There’s a lot to appreciate about spring, obviously, but, for me, these moments are the ones that shift the whole feel of a week: when it’s light enough to head down the coast on a Wednesday evening and walk at John Muir as the sun is setting. That break in the week, shaking off the sluggishness that comes with hours spent at a desk. It doesn’t have to be a midweek walk: if I could drive, this would be my default walk any day. Getting in the car, driving for half an hour, and just being here. If I could drive, I wouldn’t be at my desk this evening writing this post. I’d be back here with the lads.
Every so often we’ll have a beach walk where the light just surprises us. ‘Surprise’ isn’t really a strong enough word. Astounds us is probably a better description. Indeed, this has happened a lot recently with some incredible sunsets. But I’m really referring to those days when the skies are gloomy; those ‘nothing-y’ days with low cloud cover, when you don’t expect any light drama, and then suddenly, there it is.
I don’t tend to share many throwbacks on Instagram, but this one was an exception – and it’s also encouraged me to dig back into the archives from the last few years and revisit (and share) some older photos with a fresh edit. This was John Muir Country Park on March 8 2020, and I hadn’t shared this photo at the time as the highlights were so fierce. It was one of those photos you take in the moment, and the light isn’t right, but you can’t resist capturing it anyway.
I’ve shared about this walk in two out of the last three posts here, which tells you something: we love this walk. This stretch of coastline between Yellowcraig and Gullane has become our favourite walk so far this year – after John Muir Country Park that is, as my second home will always hold a very special place for us.
But we keep coming back to this walk for its views, its variety – beaches, dunes, winding paths, rocky shores – and its quietness.
Where to begin when writing a blog post about peaceful scenes and the beauty of nature when faced with the trauma in our world at the moment. The brutality and horrifying inhumanity of the war in Ukraine. Watching hundreds of thousands of (primarily) women and children leave the security of the lives they’ve known; their homes, their jobs, their families; their husbands, partners, fathers, brothers, sons; leaving behind their identities, for a displaced life as refugees. As I’m writing this, there are two million people, refugees, who have left Ukraine. It’s unthinkable.
What is the first thing you notice when looking at the photo above? Is it the moon? Very possibly. It was so beautiful in reality; huge, much bigger than it appears here, and I was frustrated that I couldn’t capture its scale or beauty.
Perhaps it’s the colour, that incredible glow of pink and lilac. The light was staggering; that light just after the sun had set when the sky burst into colour.