The Last Day of Summer

It is October 2 2014 and Jeff and I have been rostered for the 'morning watch' at Worm’s Head. It is yet another beautiful day of which we have had many throughout the whole of September. We are still working from the Groundhog, a rented mobile office unit used on building sites. Our permanent 'home' is being refurbished.

The sky and sea are a wonderful blue, hardly a cloud to be seen and visibility is good. There is a light breeze from the SE. The tide is in so we will not be worrying over the possibility of a "stranding". There are plenty of tourists on the cliffs enjoying what could be the last day of summer.

Jeff and I settle down in the deckchairs outside the groundhog armed with our binoculars, Jeff gave a shout... a kite... cruising on the breeze below the cliff in front of us... we were above it. What a sight, you could see its markings so clearly and the V shaped tail. It didn't seem to care how close it was to humans. It drifted off east towards Tears Point.

A short while later Jeff pointed out a rough patch of the sea about half a mile out off the Inner Head. Not only were there large numbers of seagulls sitting on the water but gannets diving.... Whow! There must be a shoal of fish out there. It was easy to see the splashes that the gannets made on entering and coming out of the water.

Later a young family visited us and told us they had seen porpoises. Really? More wild life? I had heard a great deal about porpoises in the area of Worm’s Head but never seen them myself. Jeff followed them to the cliffs edge overlooking the little bay by Kitchen Corner. He returned 5 minutes later and said "Yes, Jane, you go and have a look"... and there, a few metres away from the cliff were one or two porpoises [difficult to ascertain numbers] quietly breaking the water's surface. Apparently dolphins are more playful so these were definitely harbour porpoises. Quite small and dark , their small triangular dorsal fin moving in and out of the water, as they fished the incoming tide. I was awestruck. It took my breath away. At last the illusive porpoise!! And then only a few metres to the left a large seal appeared, cast his eyes over to take a look at us peering over the cliff edge and majestically dived down into the depths to catch more fish. He did this several more times.

What a morning!!!

The last day of summer 2014 will remain in my mind for a very long time. What a privilege to have witnessed all that wild life in their natural habitat in a few, hours.