By FIONA MCRAE
My name is Fiona. I'm lucky. I have lived in rural Scotland all of my life, over five decades now! I have seen the northern lights on many occasions; however, I got it into my head that somehow seeing them somewhere like Iceland, or Norway, they would be better, greener, move faster, doing things that we never saw in Scotland.
So with this in mind, I booked a four-day holiday in Iceland in January. Night one, it rained, disaster, no trip. Night two, a snowstorm, a big one! No trip. Night three, excitement mounted, we were heading out, busloads of us, to the hills, there would be a show! Yee-ha! NOT. They never showed, despite us hanging around, cameras at the ready until well after one a.m. I was hugely disappointed.
We'd had a great night and the snow was crunchy, the stars were twinkling and oh so bright, but nothing could make up for not seeing those lights: not the geysers, not the waterfalls, not the beautiful rugged landscapes. Nothing that is until February–when in my own backyard, I saw the best show of northern lights I have ever seen! I would even go so far as to say I doubt I'll see another like it again!
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I went outside as I'd been told there might be a light show, but thought it wasn't happening, and came back inside. Then I thought, "That's funny, there's not a moon tonight, where is all the brightness coming from?" Yup, there they were, the dancing lights! Superb! This was around eight p.m and I watched them for hours before deciding to head to the beach four miles away, then up to the hilltop another three miles away, then to another beach, then to the windmills and so on, until four o‘clock in the morning. I didn't care about sleep, nor work, nor the cold-nothing could have persuaded me to miss that show. It was simply breathtaking, humbling, and I am still in awe of the majesty of the skies on that night.
Moral of this story? Sometimes what you seek is right in front of you; you don't have to wander the earth to find miracles.
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