There’s hardly a movement on the water. It is so still that faint ripples seem to follow the beating wings of a sole bird as it flaps heavily down the length of the lough. The black currach’s don’t move, but their reflections seems to shimmer slightly as the bird passes.
Two old men in thick yellow oilskins pass empty boxes down into a currach pulled up against the little breakwater. They don’t say anything and the only sound anywhere is the sound of the boxes landing. Otherwise the entire valley is silent.
Over on the hillside to the East a horse stands perfectly silhouetted against the skyline. I watch for a good few minutes and it doesn’t move an inch. Anywhere more urban and you might question whether it was a statue. Eventually it dips its head to eat a few mouthfuls of grass before resuming its pose. You don’t get the sense it’s watching anything. It’s just standing.
The sky is grey with textured cloud. There’s just a hint of pink on the edges of some of them as the hidden sun comes up from wherever it has spent the night. Suddenly the fishermen start up the currach’s outboard and head round the corner for the open sea. The sound is shockingly loud and a couple of small black birds wheel into action like little fighter planes warning off the enemy. But almost the moment the fishermen pass the headland the sound disappears and everything returns to silence and, once the ripples fade, stillness.
Now if only I could get the camera without waking everyone else up…