I am always conscious, living here at 58.6°N, of the movement of the Earth throughout the year. The Sun appears to traverse rapidly along the horizon, as the world turns. In these wide open skies, this movement is so obvious. I watch it move across the edge of this now familiar landscape, feeling the expansion and contraction of the seasons. I can understand why, in this place, ancient peoples decided to build their complex of stone circles. The rotation and tilting of the planet can be clearly observed, as the year moves on.
I find it awe-inspiring to look up into the sky and see where I am under the sun, standing securely on this spinning globe. I feel grounded by it - secure in the dependability of it. As I write, I also have the text of today's sermon in my mind "I will never leave you, nor forsake you" (Joshua 1:5), and it resonates with this feeling - I can look out as the day begins and ends, and know that the sun will continue to rise and set without fail. In these often chaotic days of busyness, change and conflict, it is a comforting thought.
I had decided a few days ago, that I wanted to document the journey of the Sun along my horizons. Every month I will take a picture of the sun at dawn, noon and dusk, and post it here. I am looking forward to charting the turning of the year.
These pictures were taken on the last day of August. The dawn broke at 6.25 am but it took 10 minutes before the sun broke above the bank of cloud lying on the Eastern horizon. It is rising almost in line with our bottom croft.
At noon, I was at the airport, seeing my elder son on to his flight back to the mainland, after a short but very welcome visit. The sun is still quite high towards the South. There is a stiff breeze sending the clouds scudding across the sky.
Sunset was at 8.20pm - almost in the middle of the space between the two croft houses opposite.
It will be interesting to see how the world has moved on by the end of this month.