Bookshelf rows of grey granite topple into the ocean, where a sea eagle perches atop, scanning the seas horizon. It stretches its wings as wide as the bay, lifting with it the sky, dragging it behind as it sets course northward.
Most of the literature surrounding the most westerly point on British mainland has it at Ardnamurchan lighthouse. However it actually resides at Corrachadh Mor, a kilometre south over bog and rock. An unremarkable projection of quartz dolerite tumbling into the sea below. Unremarkable, little known and poignant.
Giant cushions of grey granite rise and fall to the sea. Their soft curves ran out of steam long ago. What was once in is out, there’s no turning back. And everything must be weathered come storms and flood and drought. But the whale rock is going nowhere fast. Peculiar how the surface feels warm to the touch on this cool October morning. I leave my palm on the the raspy skin expectant of an exhalation.
The most easterly point in Scotland yesterday at Peterhead. I could go no further. Fences and barbed wire, steel work, netting, plastic and fishing detritus mark the end. The harbour is a space where everything I know of the world is redundant. Here is engineering, steel, speed, weight, scale beyond dimensions I understand. Tonnage of boat and net and hold. Fast cars speak of money from the herring and mackerel. A place of noise where fuelling and fixing and preparations are made for the next trip. Sun sparkles on the water in the harbour where grey seals play, waiting for their next easy meal, and it is hard to think about the nature of water beyond the sea wall as the gales promise to swing in from the northwest in the next few days. All of it I can only imagine.