We’ll Weather the Weather…

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Algy found himself a perch in a tree by the lochside and gazed out across the moody water. The weather was growing wild and stormy again, and very soon there would be more rain. He could scarcely remember a day when it hadn’t rained, although he knew that once upon a time the sun used to shine, at least from time to time, and there had occasionally been whole weeks when one dry day followed another. He wondered whether this year was just an anomaly, or whether it would now rain for evermore in the wild west Highlands of Scotland. He was reminded of an old rhyme, which he started to sing at the top of his voice, in defiance of the weather, and for the benefit of any passer by who might happen to be listening:

Whether the weather be fine
Or whether the weather be not,
Whether the weather be cold
Or whether the weather be hot,
We’ll weather the weather
Whatever the weather,
Whether we like it or not.

The Fingers of the Storm

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Algy flew over to a low rock, to escape the incoming tide, and gazed up at the sky. The storm clouds seemed to be reaching down towards him with many dark, wispy fingers, as though they wanted to snatch him up and carry him away. Clutching the rock tightly, he wondered whether it might be safer to retreat inland until the storm had passed…

Algy hopes that if you are threatened by storms this weekend, you will be able to find a safe place to shelter until the skies clear again 🙂

The Great Sea Loch

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The weather was wild and unpredictable, and Algy had flown inland to escape the worst of the coming storm. As he approached the great sea loch he was caught by a sudden gust of wind and swept across the water to the further side. Landing on a slippery pebble beach strewn with seaweed, he perched uncomfortably on the damp stones and gazed at the moody water and the threatening sky. The great loch was behaving as though it were the ocean, with waves crashing on its shores, and he wondered how much more violent the breakers might be on his own beach, which faced the open sea…

Today Algy is celebrating the fact that the Castle Stalker View Gift Shop and Coffee Shop – Algy’s favourite café on the west coast of Scotland and a very popular venue for tourists – will be stocking both the paperback and hardback editions of his book A Surprisingly Fluffy Bird from next week. The café commands a fantastic view of Loch Linnhe, and overlooks the castle which is on an island just below it.

So, in the tradition of Throwback Thursday, Algy is taking a moment today to look back a couple of years, to the late spring of 2013, one of the many times he has visited Castle Stalker. As you can see if you look closely, on this occasion Algy flew across the water and perched on the battlements to inspect the ancient castle more closely 🙂

[Apologies for the picture quality – this older photo was taken before Algy’s assistant got a nice new camera in 2014…]

imiging:

adventuresofalgy:

As Algy watched the sun sink down, and waves of darkness stole quietly across the loch, he began to observe a strangely hypnotic phenomenon. Of course he was exceedingly tired after his arduous flight along the river, and the light in the gloaming is always tricky and apt to deceive. It’s only too easy to imagine that you are seeing strange things when twilight falls in the West Highlands, even if you are wide awake. Nevertheless, it seemed to Algy that all was not entirely as he might have expected it to be… He was too exhausted to remain alert, or even to stay awake for longer than a few moments at a time, but as he dozed to the rhythm of the flickering light, he wondered drowsily whether it was really entirely wise to fall asleep at this time…

This GIF was selected for the amazing imigif day curated by imiging. Submit your own creation to join the party next month. GIF it to us!

As many of Algy’s friends will know, Algy has always been very keen on animated GIFs, and many of his adventures have appeared as GIFs. So he was really delighted to discover today that one of the major photo curation blogs imiging was starting a monthly celebration of GIFs on the 1st day of each month. Algy feels that GIFs made from original photography have too often been ignored by the photographic community – GIFs are photographs too! At least they are the way Algy makes them – from a series of still photos.

So Algy is very pleased with imiging 🙂 And he is looking forward very much to seeing all the other wonderful GIFs that they post each month.

Of course Algy was even more thrilled to find (later in the day) that imiging had chosen one of his GIFs to include in their own selection to launch this exciting new monthly feature.

Algy sends fluffy thanks and lots of fluffy hugs to his friends at imiging xoxo

So Algy took one more look down the loch to the south, where the green island floated on the silvery water, and prepared to set off on his journey home…

Algy is thinking of all his friends who are travelling at this time of year, and wishes each of you a safe and pleasant journey, and a joyful arrival at your destination. Turas math dhuibh! xoxo

When the tide came in, Algy moved back from the water’s edge, onto an area of soft green grass. He gazed out across the great sea loch towards the other shore, with its hills shrouded in low-lying clouds. Some distance beyond those hills lay his home in the far west, and the irises would be flowering there too now. It was surely time to set off homewards… As Algy reclined among the wildflowers in the low light of the long summer evening, he remembered a poem by Rabindranath Tagore:

The time that my journey takes is long and the way of it long.

I came out on the chariot of the first gleam of light, and pursued my
voyage through the wildernesses of worlds leaving my track on many a star and planet.

It is the most distant course that comes nearest to thyself,
and that training is the most intricate which leads to the utter simplicity of a tune.

The traveler has to knock at every alien door to come to his own,
and one has to wander through all the outer worlds to reach the innermost shrine at the end.

My eyes strayed far and wide before I shut them and said “Here art thou!”

The question and the cry “Oh, where?” melt into tears of a thousand
streams and deluge the world with the flood of the assurance “I am!”

[Algy is quoting the poem Journey Home by the late 19th/early 20th century Indian poet Rabindranath Tagore.]