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Friday 13 April 2012: The Northern Lights

Layla organised this trip as a fortieth present because I've always wanted to see the Northern Lights in their full glory. Iceland's the only really accessible place you can see them reliably, but the grey weather had resigned me to going home empty handed.

That resignation stayed as I left Layla and Bella in the hotel room, and left Reykjavik on a bus at nine o'clock, with barely a dot of dusky sky visible through the clouds above. But we drove and we drove, chasing a gap that had been reported further north.

At five past midnight, our buses pulled up on a side road off a side road, turned off their engines and lights, and about sixty people crept into the darkness.

And there they were.

An amazing, wonderful experience I'll remember forever. And made all the better by the small hip flask in my pocket, which I'd filled with some of the single malt I was given by my oldest friends for my birthday.

I feel very special today.

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