Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Magpie Tales 159...Hidden Summer

Meal Beach, Burra Isles, Shetland by Robin Gosnall 
Four summers in a row of dreary, overcast skies, the gray monotony broken only by relentless rain.  That summer had been the worse yet with a meager three days of warm, beautiful sunshine between May and September.

He came home from work one Friday with an enigmatic smile and told her to pack a bag, he had taken two weeks off work and they were heading north.  He shook his head when she asked where they were going.  "I want to show you something," was all he would say.

They drove out of Edinburgh on a chilly Sunday morning in mid-September, following the eastern coastline for days.  They hiked, explored, slept wherever they could find a room, ate and drank in tiny little pubs in equally tiny villages.  And every day she asked where they were going, and every day he smiled and replied, "I want to show you something."

By the end of the week they had reached Aberdeen and boarded the ferry for the 12-hour trip to mainland Shetland.  She had stopped asking, though he hadn't stopped smiling.  At Lerwick, he drove her past the house where he'd stayed as a young man during the construction of the rigs during the boom years of North Sea oil.

Another ferry, a few short bridges to cross as they hopscotched from island to island, then he finally pulled to the side of the road and parked the car, his eyes twinkling.  Taking her hand, they walked across the little bridge and up a small slope.  Just as they topped the rise, he squeezed her hand and said, "This is what I want to show you."

With a gasp, she stared at a sight so unbelievable, she was sure it had to be a mirage.  The white sand beach was like spun sugar, dazzling in the sunlight; the color of the water shifted with each wave from turquoise to aqua, crystalline to glacial blue; the air was a warm, sensuous caress against her face.

"How?" she whispered, but she really wasn't listening as he explained about jet streams, oceanic currents and subtropical anomalies.  The endless dreary days were forgotten as she stood on the edge of paradise, the hint of other lands in the breeze.

She threw herself into his arms.  A fierce hug and several "thank you" kisses later, she charged down the rise to the beach, laughing like a kid on the first day of a summer holiday.  He smiled broadly and strolled after her.


The prompt from Magpie Tales this week brought back a most excellent memory from a wonderful adventure in my past.  Loved this photo and the reminder...


  1. Replies
    1. It was an amazing surprise to find Summer in the middle of the North Sea...

  2. Replies
    1. Thanks so much...it's a beautiful memory.

  3. A truly excellent memory - thanks for sharing it with us.

    Anna :o]

  4. Replies
    1. Totally. It's something I truly miss...