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Monday, 8 March 2010

SUNSETS AND STARFISH

Monday, 8th March 2010

One of the things I love about spending time in Daisy Cottage is enjoying the most amazing sunsets.  This weekend was no exception with regard to beautiful sunsets but as we were working getting the house ready for the coming season we didn't get a chance to get out and photograph a sunset until yesterday evening.  And missing the previous two nights sunsets was painful, believe me.  I did go down to the end of our  garden to get a glimpse of the sun as it set over St. John's Point and MacSwynes Bay but I didn't have time to enjoy it let alone photograph it.


The view from Bruckless Pier at sunset

So yesterday evening, with orange glow of the setting sun reflecting on the houses in Dunkineely, we grabbed our cameras and headed over to Bruckless pier a few minutes along the road.  This little pier is hard to find as it is not signposted and is yet another little hidden gem to be discovered in Donegal.


A tiny boat in the harbour

The views there are wonderful, the calm, reflective waters of the bay, the tiny boats bobbing on the water, the green fields and trees just across from the pier to one side and looking in another direction, views to the far hoizon.  I paused for a moment to watch a passing fishing boat setting out on a nights fishing.



Golden hues on he water at Bruckless Pier

From the tiny pier you can look out across near calm waters to the far horizon.  The warm peachy colours of the sunset reflecting on the blue water was so beautiful, almost like gold leaf had been sprinkled on it, enhanced even further by the soft shades of blue, pink and peach of the sky and the salty, sea air.  On the far horizon I paused for a moment to watch a passing fishing boat setting out on a nights fishing.  

And then as I walked back up the pier having attempted to capture the colours and the beauty around me, I happened to look down to the ground beneath me and I spotted a starfish.  There is something so perfect about these creatures of the sea and perhaps the fact we don't often see them makes seeing one at all all the more special.  Unfortunately the starfish was dead, perfectly preserved but dead.  Off course I had to photograph it and as I bent down to get in close to it, I noticed another starfish and then another and aother until I realised that all around me were pretty little starfish, all sadly dead, some on the pier and some entangled in the ropes left there by the fishermen who use the pier.

A starfish stranded on old ropes

And in an instant I realised what had happened.  There was a full moon a few nights ago and obviously there had been a very high tide which must have risen above the pier.  And later when the tide dropped again, these unfortunate little creatures had been left stranded to die in the warm sunshine of the following days.  So sad, but that is nature.  As I looked further I noticed all manner of sea creatures including tiny crabs and prawns and all dead and stranded and scattered along the lower part of the pier.


Some of the dead starfish I gathered

Now normally I live by the 'leave only footprints, take only memories' mantra but an idea came to me that I might preserve these dead creatures for future people to see in all their beauty.  I would make a collage with them and have it framed and hung in Daisy Cottage.  So my husband found a container in the car and lots of tissues to layer between the creatures to protect their perfection.  I gathered them up very gently I picked the little creatures from the pier and layed them upon the tissues to take home.  And now I must decide on how I will arrange the collage and hope I can do these pretty things justice.

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