21 Comments

Beautifully written. I have never lived anywhere with big skies, but I love holidays on the west coast of Ireland when you look out at sea and know there's nothing until north America, and the sunsets over the beaches are the best.

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Jan 27Liked by Alexander M Crow

I so relate to this. Beautifully written also.

I grew up overlooking the oceans of the North Island of New Zealand and now live amongst the Southern Alps in the South Island.

Sunrises, sunsets, stars, moons, they mark my days with meaning and joy.

I thought I would feel a "lack" of big sky, horizon sunrises and sunsets, when moving to the mountains. But I don't. I love watching the moon slowly setting early in the morning. She chooses different mountains to slide behind depending on her mood of the month. The shadows cast on the ridge lines as the sun sets in the evening are also spectacular.

I still have the "salt of the ocean.. mixed in my blood" though. I am being called back to the ocean for the next stage of my life. 🌄

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Has it taken me this long to stumble into The Crow’s Nest to look around? Yes. And what a discovery. I’m reading several of your spirited essays in the dark of a Saturday morning in the western U.S., where a line of foothills delays my sunrises but reflects dramatic alpenglow some evenings. My favorite time to start a walk is just before dawn. What better reset button than to witness the opening of the day? Maybe you’ll inspire me to give myself that treat today.

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Jan 25·edited Jan 25Liked by Alexander M Crow

Gorgeous writing. I love both dusk and dawn, but wonder why it is that dusk seems to pass so quickly but dawn takes it sweet time? Although I suppose that could be to do with the current season - winter, northern hemisphere, days are short.

And to be fair to the sun, "slow to arise and in a hurry to rest" is how I approach my days as well.

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Jan 24Liked by Alexander M Crow

I live for sunrise and sunset, and if I don’t have a big sky with one of those for days on end, I can tell in my soul that something is off. Same with being close to water. When I endured the gray winter skies of Seattle, I once drove three hours to the coast for two hours of sunshine and mostly blue skies, then drove back to Seattle, knowing I could make it through another week. I also love how you mention South Uist, as I just made plans to spend a few weeks in the Outer Hebrides, starting with landing at the Lochboisdale ferry station (from Mallaig) and mostly staying in pods or cottages with sky and water views. I can’t wait.

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I think one of the most atmospheric sunrises I witnessed was on Hirta with a shaft of light flooding over from Boreray.

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Have you read Milkman by Anna Burns? It’s set in roughly 1980s Ireland and the main character’s appreciation of the pink of a sunset is seen as non-conformist and a little strange and even dangerous, which was a mindset I had never imagined before. I don’t know if this reflects a real attitude or if it was more a literary device. It’s a central symbol in the story, either way.

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