The lengthening days and the anticipation of sunny weather are part of what makes May special, but in rural parts there are more subtle triggers that stir a deeper-rooted happiness that is somehow extracted from the locked chest of childhood.
I’m talking about the cuckoo’s call coming from somewhere across the fields. That clear, spoken pair of syllables cuck koo that sounds prehistoric, beautiful, and somehow like a personal call to you.
The smell of wild garlic from the woods outside Mount Charles and the coconut scent of the furze when at last the sun is warm enough to raise it.
Meanwhile the mountains are predominately brown right now with this late spring. But within two weeks the green explosion will have taken place and the passage of clouds will be as dramatic on their flanks as it is in the skies above Barnesmore. Vacillating, bottle green, gliding along the hectares of unfurling bracken, they will be the flowing current that is the Donegal hills in Summer-time.