21st June. Last Thursday. The longest day of the year. I spend months looking forward to it, all through the grey depths of winter, and then it finally arrives. Trouble is, it's over in the blink of an eye and then the evenings start creeping in again - always a disheartening thought - and before you know it, it's winter. Ah well, ç'est la vie.
One of the joys of the longest day is watching the sun setting at its most northerly point. Missed it this year due to watching the Portugal/Sweden Euros quarter final on telly. However, before the match, I enjoyed a quick dogwalk up the back lane to the granite cross and beyond when the sun was still fairly high on the left even though it must have been about 8.15pm.
In the fields on either side of the lane, the farmers had been out cutting the tall grasses with their tractors and mowers, and the air was dusty with pollen. Took a few photos of the freshly cut grass which will be left to dry in the sun for a few days before being rolled into bales and stacked in barns, or wrapped in plastic and stacked in fields, in readiness for cattle feed in winter. Then, when it's all been baled up and carted off, we'll have our top fields back again for dogwalks; the grass has been too long for walking in lately - the dogs get ticks and there's a danger of snakes.
Ambling back home I took a snap of the tree shadow hitting the side of the house. Took one last year at sunset when the shadow was bang in the middle of the wall. Would have been there this year about halfway through the Portugal/Sweden match when I was curled up in front of the telly. Then took a snap of the house shadow hitting the churchyard tree. Seems strange to think that in just six months' time that shadow will be way up to the left at about 4pm - that's in the unlikely event of there being sunshine on the shortest day. Strange too that on the longest day of the year I should be thinking of being snowed-in in winter. Very odd.
1 week ago