The cat is hot. Every time I wriggle further away, he pushes himself back against me. It is comforting and uncomfortable at the same time. For a while sleep and wakefulness are locked in combat but finally, I realise I am awake. I flap around for my watch – one of those electronic devices that are supposed to flip on so you can read the time, your emails, or how fat you getting, but won’t come on when you want to see the time – and which has an irritating habit when you wear it in bed of turning on like a bloody searchlight every time you turn over – and see it is 05.25. Close enough, I think, so I might as well get up.

Downstairs I collect the camera and then realise I can still see the stars brightly – the Plough is low in the sky as is the sun when it is around, throwing its long shadows. I decide to delay, and instead I clean the kitchen and make an early coffee. I watch the horizon slowly lighten and spot a light, bright, moving along the top of the Down. A dog walker with a torch perhaps? The morning weather image can wait until there is a bit more light, the really dark mornings are messing with the imagery making it as one observer noted, a blue period for morning photos. At least this morning it’s not raining, and it is surprisingly warm at 8 degrees, despite the clear sky which normally in December would denote a frost.

The gulls at least raucously celebrate the clear warm dawning as a hint of pink appears along the skyline. There is no cloud so no spectacular this morning, but I’ll wait a little longer. The cat of course has fed himself and gone back to sleep. OH keeps threatening to time his sleep hours, I reckon probably 20 hours a day. At least the colder weather seems to have given the country mice in the garden a respite from his hunting, as none have been laid on the carpet recently. Shouldn’t say that should I, tempting providence?

A garden away the robin gives voice, the first of the avian chorus to sing. Our own robin seems to have decided the front garden is better, although there I think he has competition on the feeder from the squirrel. A fat magpie appears later in the tree, and there seems to be a general increase in corvids, with young jays scouting the garden almost daily.

The sky is lightening now, a gull floats gracefully over in the breeze. The blue is paling tinting at the base with pink as the sun appears as our orbital rotation makes it our turn to enjoy a day. Politicians can impose all sorts of rules, which of course we are free to ignore if we follow their examples, but they can’t take away the pleasure of seeing the world around us. I have been enjoying the images of the sea defences for a few years, but the beauty of the oaks locally is seducing me away from the sea to the Downs and woods behind.

Today I will get another of my book of prints of the ‘BRotS’ bound and start working on some images of trees, although there are also some images of fishermen’s detritus to work on. I can see the garden path now so I think I will start with the weather photo, breakfast and then get creative. After shifting the cat off my chair of course…



Note that the heading image is a collage of images representing a view of the year. Each of the others is this December 2020. I have now taken over 2,000 morning weather photos….a bit bonkers….