When the sun slips below the horizon, shortly before 10 p.m, the blue twilight hours begin.  At present civil twilight in North Northumberland lasts until just 10.45 while nautical twilight, the time when there’s sufficient sky light left to navigate at sea, lingers on until 1 a.m.  Sources differ in the exact times they give for this lingering light and the start of the pre-dawn glow (when the sun is between 6° and 12° below the horizon) but it seems to be generally agreed that at this latitude in early July full night lasts about half an hour.


moon path spittal beach


Last night the sky was clear and the sea glimmered in the light of a full moon too.  I’ve learnt from ‘Lost in Translation’* that the ‘road-like reflection of the moon in the water’ is known in Swedish as mångata – a concept that most cultures don’t feel the need to describe very often.

* ‘Lost in Translation – An Illustrated Compendium of Untranslatable Words from Around the World’ by Ella Frances Saunders, Square Peg, 2015.