This year, the summer solstice has blessed us with two glorious days of brilliant sunshine. Now in the late afternoon of the 22nd June, I am relaxing on my balcony after a trip to the annual Victorian Fayre in Llantwit Major. I have enjoyed the bustle of the crowds and the street entertainment but now, around 5pm, I have entered a peaceful haven, where the air is totally still, where a strange silence hangs over the ocean and the garden at the back of this apartment block. Even the gulls sail by without a sound and everyone seems to have gone out with the tide. This solstice has an extraordinary quality of light which invokes that feeling I sometimes experience of sitting in a painting, like a figure on a sunlit canvas with an artist painting the sky and the sea in several delicate shades of blue and grey, with clouds as downy and motionless as sleeping swans. This masterpiece has an atmosphere of rare calm that brings contentment. The days will gradually get shorter now but even so there is still the promise of a whole summer ahead of us and time outside.
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