27 September 2012

A different night

Does Google’s Current Moon Phase gadget take account of your location? You would expect it to, since it knows who you are, and where you are. And yet, at this time in this place I should be seeing a Waxing Gibbous 95 percent of full, whereas in reality the dog and I, on our nightly outing, were only able to observe a hidden glow, with no discernible moon as such behind the clouds. 

The clouds themselves were a thin yellowish layer, far lighter than the thick walling that separated us from the sky for most of the last three weeks. A mist, one could say. Thin enough to let the glow shine through, as if the moon were a presence concealed behind a tree, or a shed, or a hill. But I looked around and there was none of the aura that would betray a hidden moon. 

Last night was different. It was a Northumbrian incandescence like the fiercest unleashings of lunar ferocity ever seen on these valleys. What a world of difference from one night to the next. Like being on another planet.

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