Thursday, 2 November 2017

Unsung Corner

Looking out over the fields above Scurlage, everywhere looks soggy. More depressions queue up in the Atlantic, threatening to deposit further rain on the already saturated ground. But this is normal, November is usually the wettest month of the year.

I stay close to the car, venturing out between heavy showers to peer over the hedge. The gusty wind is due west, blowing dark clouds quickly across a leaden sky. Grazing sheep look wet and miserable, most seeking out the higher ground away from the soaked grass.  A distant starling flock moves as one, commuting between fields. Lapwings will join them when the weather turns cold, and there are no winter thrushes yet.  Black-headed gulls are confined to one field, searching for worms brought to the surface by the sodden earth.

In between showers, the sun abruptly changes everything. Crystal-clear, watery-light streams across the green fields, turning the gulls almost pure white. Perfectly shaped rainwater droplets hanging from late ripe blackberries are all of a sudden rainbow-coloured.  The air feels fresh and clean, and  for a few minutes I believe the weather has changed for the better, but in no time at all the heavens open again, the colour disappears, and everything reverts to grey once more.
I drive slowly towards the turning to Horton. Years ago I could sometimes find little owls along this road, and wonder if there are any left on Gower. The track left to Merrysun and its pond is waterlogged, so I sit watching the house sparrows going in and out of the barn by the road. There are a few tree sparrows amongst them, another speciality of this unsung corner of Gower.

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