I’m walking along the barren rocky coast of the north of Westray. There seems to be very little directly north of here apart from the Arctic. It’s a landscape of shattered rock, wild waves and changeable weather.
I’m stumbling along the cliffs when I realise there’s a Shag on the rocks opposite me. We see one another and both start. We’re separated by a chasm, the sort of rocky fissure which is common here and which has deepened over thousands of years as the wind and the waves have conspired to weaken the coast. I decide to sit down and act as if I’m doing nothing special in the hope that it will stay. It’s a little wary, but seems reassured that I’m not encroaching on its sense of personal space.
I raise my camera: