The sun shines bright

For the last couple of days the sun has shone in a clear blue sky.  Everything is diamond bright.  The hills have edges.  The bare trees make intricate shapes against the newly greening fields.  Snowdrops shine.  A jet trail rises against the vivid blue sky.  I love this.  For weeks we have been living in a grey world where the hills disappear and merge into the grey sky.  Grey and mud underfoot, grey and lowering cloud overhead.  It has been like living in a wet dustbin.  And all of a sudden everything sings.



I wander round the garden and pick some hellebores for the kitchen table.  Everywhere the snowdrops, which have been lurking for weeks in tight bud, are open to the sun.  Under the apple trees are the promise of daffodils in great fat snouts, green but here and there the odd one faintly flushed with yellow.  There is enough warmth in the sun for me to sit outside, wrapped in my scarf and with three layers on, to drink my cup of tea.  The sun on the hills is shouting at me to come out, to walk up and up.  The dog has been ready for a walk, in her gentle undemanding way, for about an hour.  She heard me take my coat from the hook and whizzed through into the kitchen hopefully.  She has pottered about the garden with me quite happily but when I come out of the house with the lead in my hand up goes the tail like a flag and off we go.  I love the way the dog's joy at a walk is renewed every day.


Up the lane we go, Ian setting a pace which has me slightly out of breath.  Behind us we hear the sound of a tractor with a large trailer behind it labouring up the hill.  We stand to one side on the grass and call the dog to come and sit by us until the tractor has passed.  The driver raises a hand in acknowledgement.

The view begins to open out on our left, the valley gently falling away behind the bare hedge and the head of the valley rising to the ridge and the Bronze and Iron Age hillforts of Moel Arthur and Penycloddiau.



Everything is sharp and clear: the catkins on the hazels, the water running clear down the side of the lane.   Up and up, I am into my stride now.  I feel I could go for miles.  The tarmacked road runs out and becomes a rough track.  Up here are trees shaped by the winds.  The sheep which live out on top of the hills for most of the year are down in the small fields by the farm, already broad and clumsy with the new lambs yet to be born.  The track stops in a tiny informal car park.  We go through the gate so that we can look down at the Vale, over to Snowdonia and down to the sea.






The view here is too big for my camera but right in front of me the bare trees catch the falling sun in long shadows.  I think, as I often do at the moment when I walk, how much my father would have loved it up here.  And we turn back for home.

Comments

  1. those long shadows, are pause for thought, to enjoy the view.

    On Saturday we went on a gentle (but still up hill beyond my current 'fitness') hike, and I saw that view across False Bay out to the open sea for the first time - lost in wonder!

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    1. A view of the sea sounds wonderful Diana. It's about ask that or view lacks although there is a small shining far too the north!

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  2. Lovely post. Our dog starts barking madly when she knows she is going for a walk, she's a labrador with a very big bark! Fortunately she doesn't bark much apart from walk time, and when someone knocks at the door of course. These early spring days are good for the soul X

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    1. Yes, early spring is a special time. It is good to be reminded of all that new life waiting underground.

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  3. It *has* been lovely with the sun, hasn't it? Especially after all that grey and mud. I love our walks right now - the dog spends all her time sniffing, and I spend mine examining shrubs and trees for buds, leaves, etc. There's a beautiful pussy willow in a garden down the street from us, and I always stop to surreptitiously stroke its buds. Pretty sure the neighbors all think to themselves, "Here comes that crazy American lady." ; ) Bath is so lovely when the sun is shining - can only imagine how beautiful it is where you are in Wales!

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    1. Bath is beautiful at any time but spring is going to be fabulous.

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  4. A perfect, perfect walk. Oh, how I love the landscape.

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    1. Thank you. We are very lucky to live somewhere so beautiful. And thanks for the warning about being hacked. I hope I have sorted it out.

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  5. I wanted to let you know that your email may have been hacked. I've gotten two fake emails from you.

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  6. When the weather has been dismal, and yours certainly has, the sun is so much appreciated by us and every living thing around us. Take advantage, as it is so restorative :}. I love your views on the walk and Spring flowers already showing, it just seems to take a ray of sun to get plants going again.

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    1. You must get so much sun where you are that you get to take it for granted!

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  7. Beautiful! I love the sun, particularly in winter and very early spring. :-)

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    1. The sun means so much when the days are short. And it is wonderful to feel then getting longer!

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  8. Fabulous views, I just don't think you can beat North Wales. I've so enjoyed the last few sunny days, more please! Jane x

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    1. We are having more sun right now! Hope you are where you are too.

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  9. What a lovely walk with some beautiful views and you've described so well the signs of early spring. I used to love going for long walks with my dog, but he's too old for that now. He just sits down after a few paces and refuses to go any further!

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    1. I hope the dog gets his pleasures in other ways that aren't as tiring!

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  10. A wonderful morning and a beautiful view! xx

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    1. It is a great view. Hope you are having sun where you are!

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  11. What a lovely post, I could almost feel the sunshine and the lift to the spirits it brings.

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    1. It is funny. I don't think fit a moment that I suffer from seasonal affective disorder where winter brings on depression but I do certainly respond with instant joy to sunshine!

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  12. what absolutely gorgeous photos! One day I will venture there....one day.

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  13. Everything is so much better when the fog lifts and the grey turns to color.

    Your post is very uplifting especially for those of us who yearn for spring days.

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    1. Fog and murk really get you down don't they. Hope you are getting some sun now.

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  14. Such beautiful countryside to wander through!

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    1. Thanks HR. It is. I e from your blog that you have a welsh connection. You must come and see for yourself one day!

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  15. So vivid, I feel I am walking with you in your Welsh hills, Elizabeth. Cold, clear days are the best thing about winter.

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  16. Oh Elizabeth, I thank you so much for this post. To realize that you already have flowers blooming and that it's warm enough to sit outside with a cup of tea told me how much closer you all have drawn to spring. Ahh, but to be allowed to go along on that splendid walk really has lifted my February in the city spirits. Those views are well worth the climb. Excellent exercise, too, is clearly on the menu. It's a painter's dream. xo

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    1. I would love to have you passing it Frances. That would be something!

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  17. You are a great essayist. Really enjoyed this walk.

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    1. Thank you. I am seriously delighted that you think so.

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  18. Daffodil snouts - wonderful. Beautifully written Elizabeth. X

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    1. The daffodils are staying to open now so they are getting less like snouts and more like flowers!

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  19. I wished that I could enlarge every picture, and then I wished I could just walk into each one. The views are certainly inspiration for a good long walk. We are still living at the bottom of that dustbin here in rainy Victoria. At just before 0700 there is a break in the rain, and the dog and I will head out in a minute or two. Like your buddy, his joy in the walk is fresh every day!

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    1. It would be very good to have the chance to walk with you one day. We must make a date if you come to the UK again!

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  20. Oh for the weather to walk, what lovely views you have once up there, having got rid of the snow we now have wall to wall rain again. lovely photos and a happy dog :)

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    1. Hope your rain has stopped. We are having a few more days of cold but sun.

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    2. frosts and dustings of snow again, but we have had some dry sunny days too :)

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  21. Just beautiful - the words and the pictures.

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    1. Thank you and how good to find you blogging again!

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  22. Reading this has made my day. Thanks Elizabeth.

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  23. What a lovely walk! Thanks for taking us along.

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