I had to get up this morning at 4:30am. My wife had promised to do it but I had unexpectedly obtained a good eight hours sleep by that time. Consequently, when the alarm went off, I volunteered to go. Not meeting much (any!) resistance to my suggestion, I got up, dressed and went out.
It was a beautiful morning (night) and the air was crystal clear. The sky was alive with stars. Being an amateur astronomer, I scanned the heavens for familiar sights. The “plough” was there and, being October, Orion is back in the Northern hemisphere. Looking up, I was transfixed by the sight of two high-level aircraft flying parallel and almost neck and neck. In their accidental formation, they both flew through Orion, their contrails subtly backlit by the full moon.
Following a hasty de-icing of the windscreen, I drove in good spirits to Limerick city. The roads were inhabited at that hour mainly by taxi’s and the odd police vehicle. I was rewarded on the journey by the very pleasing sight of some of Limericks finest buildings, lit up and reflected in the very still waters of the Shannon River. I made a mental note that I must retrace these steps soon with a camera and tripod.
With my daughter collected, the journey home obliged me with the sight of a lone fox criss-crossing through the countryside. Back and forth it went, its’ bushy tail following behind like a tethered furry cylindrical balloon – kept level with the fox by virtue of its’ continuous forward motion.
As we alighted outside the house, looking skywards once again I noticed another two high-level aircraft race east towards continental Europe, their navigation lights flashing periodically in the darkness. Even my daughter was enthralled by the stillness, the vastness of space and the fabulous light show overhead. It was nothing short of breath-taking.
As we walked towards the back door still staring skywards, my wife’s voice broke the stillness of the air.
“Are you coming in or not?” she said.
Entering the house, she had a piping hot cup of tea ready.
If Carlsberg could do magical nights…they still wouldn’t be able to match this one.
Morning everyone 😉