We had no high hopes of seeing the partial solar eclipse.
Met Eireann had been confidently pessimistic - predicting a blanket of cloud wrapped over Ireland like a goose down duvet. But eclipses don't come around too often, even the partial variety, and next year's total eclipse will require a trip to Borneo or Australia by stargazers.
So we dragged ourselves out of the four poster, and out of Lough Eske Castle, found a vantage point on the lake shore, perched ourselves on a rock and flapped our arms to keep warm, like cormorants hanging their wings out to dry. We waited.
The silence was almost complete, broken only by the lapping of water on the shore and the flirtatious quacks of a trio of drakes trying to woo a single female. Frankly she looked a little harassed.
Even the nearby Bluestack Mountains were obscured so we had pretty much given up on seeing anything and simply enjoyed the tranquil scene.