I had other plans for today, other responsibilities – but the day was fine and mild, and after sitting outside with the FT over a mid-morning breakfast, after a cup of coffee and an indulgent cigar, other ideas took hold. The past week or so has seen a lot of travel, so I wanted to be at home; the days have been full of interviews and reading, words and talk – I have begun the final section of the second last chapter of my novel, I have had emails to write and documents to draft, and screeds and screeds of handwritten notes to file, mentally as well as literally – so I wanted some other kind of diversion, something else to absorb and satisfy.

Perhaps because I have been browsing, knees drawn up under the duvet these cold and solo nights, through a book on photography, and a Birds and Birding photo supplement, I suddenly thought I might spend some time sorting through photos, maybe touching up a picture or two, maybe even making a print.

The day simply flew. Apart from a lovely call from my daughter Kathy, just back from two weeks running training courses in Kenya and Tanzania, and a call from my wife – it is time, now, my darling, to come on home  – all I could think of was the images I was working on: selecting, editing, running a couple of trial prints, discarding those that didn’t work and – by the end of the day, as the light outside was cooling and the sky became luminous and clear – I had two A3 prints laid out in Rob’s office, and a smaller A4 photograph. And here they are:

Like some of you who may be reading this blog, I have been reminded, too, too recently and too suddenly, that all of our lives hang by the merest thread: it is important that we live, while we are alive. Sometimes it’s good, when life takes over.