Monday, 24 December 2012

The Power of Water

This Christmas period and in fact this year has been blighted here in the U.K. by bad weather and flooding. It must be awful to be driven from your home and lose your possessions simply due to the strength of water. We live 900 ft up so don't have that problem but I have never underestimated the power of water since we crossed the North Atlantic in gale force winds on the Speybridge back in 1984 (or 83?). This was a obo (oil, bulk, ore) vessel on which John was the Chief Officer at the time. We were on our way to Canada from Antwerp. Fortunately it turned out I'm not affected by seasickness unlike many of the crew but I still remember with awe just how high those waves were, how wild the sea and how very, very small that huge vessel suddenly seemed in the face of such natural forces. Strangely enough I wasn't scared, reckoning there was nothing I could do apart from sitting it out. I even remember enjoying a gorgeous curry (the crew were from India) in a completely deserted mess. Half the crew were hard at work trying to avoid disaster while the rest were ill in their bunks. Strange then that I remember this with great nostalgia!
Since those days I have never been surprised by just what damage water can do. But if I had been in any doubt then just looking at what reservoirs look like after a prolonged period of rain would teach me. We went for a drive today (a Blip and thus photographic expedition!) and came past both Gladhouse and Roseberry Reservoirs. They both supply water to Edinburgh and both were as high as we have ever seen them. The water is diverted into the water pipes in an orderly fashion that you can see at the top for Gladhouse Reservoir. But just look at that angry water, boiling and roaring downwards.
 At first glance Roseberry reservoir seemed more peaceful seen through the trees as we approached it.
But that too proved to be an illusion once we reached the place where the water is lead downwards under a road bridge on which I was standing while taking these photographs. It's a stepped descent as you can see quite well above and the noise was ear shattering.
A beautiful sight but also a very good demonstration of the power of water! The above picture became my blip for today.

4 comments:

Lenna Young Andrews said...

amazing story, frieda - i sent the link to steven!

Jettygirlx said...

Emotional attachment to Gladhouse.. will tell you about it sometime. The power of water; at one time beauty and terror . Love the pics and blog entry

Linda said...

We have flooding here when there is alot of snow over the winter. Water is very disstructive when there is too much. Love the blip photo, a good choice. Just hearing you talk about the crossing makes me seasick.

Linda said...

stunning photos Frieda!Much as I love the ocean and water I know there also has to be a respect and understanding of the power of it too.I owuld never have survived a trip such as yours-I can barely make it on calm seas.

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