12 June 2011

Grey skies and grey seas ... where has summer gone?

Grey skies and grey seas in Portrane this afternoon (Photograph: Patrick Comerford, 2011)

Patrick Comerford

Today is the Day of Pentecost. I was in three churches in Fingal in north Co Dublin – Kenure (Rush), Holmpatrick (Skerries) and Saint George’s, Balbriggan – to celebrate the birthday of the Church and the gift of the Holy Spirit.

But after yesterday’s wonderful sunshine in this golden coastal region, the rain returned with vengeance today. On the road from Rush to Skerries, the tide was in and the waves were choppy. Back on the road again, on the coastal road from Skerries to Balbriggan, the rain was coming down.

Three consecutive services in one church after another are difficult to time precisely, and by the time we got to Balbriggan we were already running behind schedule.

By the time I was heading back into the city centre the rain was heavy and there was considerable surface water on the road, making visibility difficult. Where has summer gone to?

John's Lane in the rain ... behind Christ Church Cathedral this afternoon (Photograph: Patrick Comerford, 2011)

I had a double espresso in La Dolce Vita in Cow’s Lane (Temple Bar), before Choral Evensong in Christ Church Cathedral. There I read the first lesson (Joel 2: 21-32), which re-emphasised the account of the first Pentecost in the readings from the Acts of the Apostles in the each of the three churches this morning.

There was an extra Pentecost joy at Choral Evensong when the Cathedral Choir sang as the anthem Edward Elgar’s The Spirit of the Lord is Upon Me, which is the prelude to his 1903 oratorio, The Apostles, Op. 43, written four years after the London premiere of his Enigma Variations.

Three of us went around the corner to Bottega Toffoli in Castle Street for coffee, and then two of us returned to Fingal for a family visit in Portrane. Below the Quay in Portrane, the sea was still choppy, and the waves were still churning the sea onto the Burrow Beach.

Oh where has the summer gone, indeed>

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