I sent photos of the marina: the still water brightly gleaming, the hills snow-covered in the distance, the boat bathed in soft late afternoon sunlight. I invited them to come and visit, telling them of how spectacular the sunset had been and adding that we still have some Aberlour aboard. Later I tucked myself into a thick downy cover beside a slowly ticking wood fire and thought snugly of them over there on the mainland, held in Glasgow’s bright busy lights.

I thought I would slide quickly into a deep sleep but instead I listened to the wind pick up and wheech round the breakwater, the halyard of the boat in the next berth start clacking against its mast; felt the waves start slapping, felt the boat begin its classic dockside jerk and sway. In the morning I woke cold and underslept and significantly less smug. But then the water stilled itself, the hills glowed rosy in the morning sun and, walking out from the marina a few hours later, a small white flower stood pink-edged against the blue twilight chill.

Boat life. Nothing beats it.

pink-tinged daisy flower seen from the side in front of blue sky, blue water and low dark hills in twilight

Port Bannatyne, Isle of Bute, Argyll, Scotland
22nd November 2016