View across the Outer Harbour of Stornoway

Monday, 30 January 2012

Monday 30 January

A bright and fairly sunny day, but show your face outside and it is bitterly cold. A brisk southeasterly breeze whistles through the town, and even if the mercury stands at 6C / 43F, it feels more like well below freezing. Frost will be the order of the night in days to come, with hard frosts in mainland glens. Living within a few dozen feet of the sea, the mercury should keep close to zero at night. Frosts do occur regularly here, but tend to be less severe due to the proximity to the sea.

Two local policemen have become celebrities on the internet after they were pictured taking to the guitar and drums while on duty. They were on active duty at the time, but Northern Constabulary have not come down hard on the bobbies, saying the men were engaged in community policing – which is not always heavy going. To quote Gilbert & Sullivan: “A policeman’s lot is a happy one”.

As I type this, the light fades as the sun dips well below the horizon. Sunset time is 4.40pm, which is more than an hour later than at the solstice, in late December. Even at sunrise, we have gained 40 minutes, with sunrise now by 8.35 am. We’re slowly climbing out of the deep valley of winter.