A Grey Auld Day

I forgive myself for being optimistic on this mid-winter day, the winter solstice, a day of moving from darkness into light. In effect, it is bringing the dark days to an end or, if not the end, certainly the beginning of the end as daylength will exceed that of night from today onwards.

Midwinter day was marked in many ways over the millennia. We are all aware of the dawn incursion of the shaft of light into the prehistoric tomb Newgrange and of the alignment of ancient monuments with the sunset so it was not extravagant of me to hope for something interesting and, perhaps, beautiful this morning as I was out of bed and into the garden in time for the sunrise. But, we saw no sunrise this morning only a brightening of the gloom, a little dull light through the cloud and mist and by lunchtime Mary had named it ‘a grey auld day!” Yes, that was about it, a grey auld day; another one!

This evening Jupiter and Saturn are scheduled to be very close together in the western sky, best viewed around 6.30pm; so close, in fact, that they may produce that phenomenon experts say was the original Christmas star. That would be nice but it is also very unlikely we will see it here in Waterford as the cloud has not cleared all day. Yes, it is a grey auld day.

11 thoughts on “A Grey Auld Day

  1. Similar to Finola’s passing, I cycled to The Bridge at lunchtime. It was grey but only a very light mist. But it turned to real rain on the way back. Very mild though, so I sang a few carols to myself.

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  2. I’m a big fan of the Winter Solstice Paddy – they had beautiful sunshine there yesterday but today I found the video on YouTube for that day – but after tonight the days get imperceptably longer! It was cloudy here in Laois all day too!

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    1. Oh, a miserable day and miserable photographs! But, the days are getting longer – a stretch in the evenings – and it will brighten up from now on!

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  3. Paddy, I’ve just discovered your blog. Shortest day, winter solstice. Very mystical time. It must have been a miserable old time in the good old days without central heating, television and a imported food. Sadly the planets were unavailable last night here in Yorkshire though I hold out great hopes for tonight when I venture out with the grandchildren on an illuminated tour of our local wildlife park.

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    1. I didn’t recognise you immediately – that’s a bit like saying to someone that you didn’t recognise them in their clothes! You have been Mr. Galanthophile in my mind up to now! Lovely to make contact here, again.

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