If you type sunset into Google, 69,300,000 hits come up. The first one telling you the time of your local sunset.
Type it into YouTube, 494,000 hits come up. A video entitled PERFECT SUNSET 3O MINS, has had almost 2,400,000 views.
Type it into Google Images and you get 409,000,000. Some of the pictures are actually amazing. (And, in my opinion, pretty damn fake but that’s not the point here.) Different landscapes; beaches, mountains, islands. Most, however, feature some body of water, some sort of horizon and the occasional palm tree. Now, don’t get me wrong, these places look amazing.
But I don’t live in Bali or Hawaii or the Caribbean. Noooo. I live in South London, and when the sun sets, it’s usually covered by some form of cloud or pollution. And should you see one, the ‘body of water’ will most likely be rain, the ‘horizon’ will most likely be some tower blocks, and the ‘trees’ most likely telephone lines. The point is, round here, I’m not going to see a ‘pretty’, ‘amazing’ sunset anytime soon. So, if I did for some reason want to see one, I could of course, ‘google’ it or ‘youtube’ it.
Uh-huh, I could see all these nice sunsets in places I might never go to.
I could watch a video of a beautiful sunset.
Can these pictures and videos make you feel the decreasing temperature as slowly but surely day becomes night?
Or can they make the laughing children down the road, and the drunken neighbours seem less important than ever but at the same time more important than anything?
Or can they get someone to get up and light some candles so you can stay out and watch this slowly lowering sun?
Or can they mindlessly talk to you about football or fashion as you half listen, half watch?
Or can they pour you a drink and get you a blanket while the sky turns from blue to purple to pink to purple to blue to black?
Or can they put its arm around you and tell you that you look more beautiful than ever? (Which you know is true because everyone looks better in this sort of light.)
Or can they make you forget about the tower blocks and rain and telephone lines?
Or can they remind you that children’s laughter, adult’s drunkenness, candle light, mindless conversation, warm days, cooler nights and beautiful, lovely people are the reason we live and laugh and love?