Islands In This Cold, Cold Sea

Mornings following mornings following mornings, sitting with a coffee and nowhere to go.

But I can still travel. Without going out of my door as Harrison sang.

During this lockdown we are all becoming islands, but still part of a vast archipelago, casting our messages in technological bottles that lap against each other’s shores.

Tides and tidings, what do they bring today?

The RNLI had launched a vessel from their Aberystwyth base, just twenty minutes ago. I follow many of the stations around our coastline on Twitter, marvelling at the courage of the volunteers who regularly head out into the kind of conditions that would make me blanch.

As well as the personal Twitter sites of the bases around the shorelines that I’m familiar with, it’s the RNLI: Out On A Shout that gives the regular updates. The listings though are sparse, just postings of times and places, critically cryptic (or should that be cryptically critical?), prompting a visit to the named stations in the hunt for further details.

‘Cold cleavings of the sea’ now comes to mind, something from George Mackay Brown’s The Masked Fisherman which I was reading last night. Everything leads to something else, an ever moving current.

Closer to home I learn of the death of a local church minister that I was acquainted with. I didn’t know him well, but he was a popular figure around here as the many technological bottles testify to. The last time I’d seen him he appeared quite gaunt, the way time affects those who have not a lot of meat on their bones to begin with.

There seems to be a lot of people leaving us at the moment. People once present now cut adrift, disappearing beneath the surface of vision.

I decide on a refill, taking a glance out of the kitchen window. It is yet another cold start, the sun is trying its best, though.

9 thoughts on “Islands In This Cold, Cold Sea

  1. Andy, I just finished Dark, Salt, Clear so your post had extra resonance. Yes, we are islands and we do have to work hard to stay connected, and we are mostly exhausted. In spite of which we keep going. Be safe and well if you can.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I just checked out that book and was surprised that it was from a place in the UK, I presumed it would be about somewhere in your country. I don’t know why I should think that as I’m currently reading An Affair of the Heart which is about Greece.


  2. After months of feeling down, yesterday the weak sun was attempting to shine through the grey clouds and as I stared up at it, suddenly felt better. Am thinking once Spring arrives and nature bursts into life, we’ll be able to better cope. Lovely to read your musings.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes Spring brings with it all this analogies of new starts and rebirth. And the weather certainly helps-the first lockdown we had some lovely weather.
      Like wise it’s always nice to read your comments too.


  3. My brother was just texting about how many people died in 2020. And a friend texted about his son growing up and how we all used to get together before the pandemic hit. Sigh. Yes, connection needs to be intentional. I’m reminded of boat parties people have in lakes where boats are linked up and people walk from boat to boat. We need that linking.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Connections and links. Social animals that we are. I think of how more difficult our children would have found the last year, always from school and their friends, without the benefit of technology to remain in touch.


  4. The technological bottles of Zoom meetings and Teams meetings. Colleagues behind the screens of laptops crushed by the weight of failing audio and low bandwidth. Meetings following meetings following meetings. Oh where’s that coffee?

    Liked by 1 person

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