Arcania shines in November. Cobalt blue skies adorn a sun low and yet still bright. The island harbours an ice-free world few dare to fret.
Whereas geese and fieldfares grace winter fields, the other side of the loch, much closer to the shore, attracts the eye. Sunset is approaching. Every starling still mingles in lukewarm air, as our star begins to slide behind a front. Its every moves dictates our world how to behave. That horizon distracts my heart. I jump over the fence to join him by the shore.
He is whistling to the north Atlantic. From the distance, ripples, one and then two dots appear at the surface of the ocean. He tells me to walk slowly closer to them and keep whistling. He walks away as I begin this selkie song. My steps feel light, as I reach the nearest boulder to sit. Time has vanished. Crouched on my rock, I watch their every movement. My whistling arouse their curiosity. They disappear and re-surface a little closer…
Immersed in this strange musical game, our closest star begins to glow a little more. Our Nordic sky turns honey gold and I wonder if they will return after dusk and shift into our shape for a night… I leave my two sea mammal friends and watch starlings gather in a sky of fire.
My island world has little time to prepare for darkness. Four moorhens swim away on the shallow loch. Swans and geese feed franticly. A closer look towards the croft and starlings melt inside the sky. Roosting time.
The urge to reach new altitude is shared as eyes turns towards honey. The narrowness of the island allows grand views from my favourite hilltop. However, a quick look around a semi-derelict croft by the roadside lets me capture two orange eyes with tufted ears. Yes, one silent hunter rests on a metal gate… Or is it resting? Its head turns like a lighthouse beam after sunset. It is looking at my lens and it knows I am here, hiding in one corner. I will not go closer. The air turns crisper as crimson is far too eager to wash the sky. It feels a race against night.
From my hilltop, I gaze at Ninian in lost blue…
Too soon, crimson has filled a perfect moment. It is just 1545 and, by the time I am back home, dusk has settled in the island. Am still thinking of those selkies inside that bay, and feel their spirits in darkness.
Will be dreaming of ocean folk and maybe walk on my sand bridge tomorrow…