Life as a gift given just to this world - to nowhere else so far known in the universe; things could hardly have felt more alive than just in the last week, but often life is felt most keenly when you know that death isn't far away. On Rum and on the mountains it is easy to feel you are on the cusp between life and death, because often, you are. But at the moment, we feel all the weight of what that means in reality, not just as a symbolic idea. This weekend one person walking on Rum lost his life to the mountains and we are mourning someone we didn't know, who came here to experience the beauty of the island, but to experience its challenges too, and we are left knowing more consciously than usual that our island is a place where the intensity of life goes hand in hand with its dangers.
Of course this is true all the time, death is always around us, but it's often in the most beautiful places that you are most conscious of the enormity, strangeness and fragility of life. We were watching dolphins in the bay on Sunday when the search party was out looking for the missing person, and it couldn't have been more beautiful, and along with our sadness at what had happened we felt awed to be part of this world and its wonders. We still do I think. I hope this is something of what he felt too on his walk on the mountains, on one of the most beautiful days we've had this year.