Wednesday, 18 May 2011

There might be giants...

(There is an exam question at the end of this blog entry).

Los Gigantes is a high and desolate place, a barren place, a place far from towns and peope and roads.  It is a cold and treeless pace, a place of thin bitter soils, of tough grasses, of thistles, and of rocks exposed to the harsh mountain sun. It is a wide place under giant skies. And yet, incogruously, there is here a church, white and stark against the black and grey of the unforgiving granite, a man-made outpost in this harsh and
unyielding land.

Like the squat square tower of the church the grantite also reaches for the sky, great rounded spires scored with grooves and cracks, slab-sides blotched grey and green with lichen and moss. Small shrubs, twisted and low, dark green, manage to survive in the shelter of the narrow confines of the few  riverbeds that seek refuge from the heights by wending their way down to the busier plains below.

To this place few come.  Farmers herding the few cattle able to survive here, hardy thick-fleeced sheep, birds with plaintive cries that get lost on the wind. And climbers, seeking adventure on the granite, battling their way upwards in cracklines, on slabs, in chimneys and on walls, seeking the protection of widely-spaced bolts, and of distant cam placements, small sharp holds torturing finger tips, tense feet, balancing.

The rains and mists come too, enveloping the spires, dampening all, and the white morning sea laps against the ramparts of the high land, submerging the lowlands beneath. The sun, blood-red, rises angrily behind its  ramparts of cloud, harbinger of dire forebodings, chasing the interlopers away. But when the rain is not there, in the full heat of the mid-day sun, these dark hills can be hospitable, green gullies hidden between great towers of rock, mica crystals catching the sun, limpid pools sparkling, hares starting from shelter and birdsong filling the air.

Now, here's the question: what is the colour of this post?


  1. Hello Steve! What a wonderfully written, highly lyrical, delightful to read post! I found it very inspiring and your descriptions very easy and magical to visualise :) Always a good sign!

    The post starts off as a stark grey, and finishes on a hopeful green plain :)
    Take care and hope that you're having loads of fun!
    Sounds like you're seeing some amazing sights.
    Emma xxx

  2. Enjoying your blog Steve, ive been reading it since I got back home, keep it coming, and keep going with the book!