I'm originally from a city in Spain which is 40 degrees north, and I used to watch Mercury (naked eye and telescope) every time I had the opportunity, that is, when Mercury was at maximum elongation and there was a clear sky (pretty often thankfuly). Once, I even saw it on a lovely conjunction with Venus, both standing above 5 storey buildings, from the very centre of the city! Amazing.
Three years ago I moved to the Shetland isles, which is 60 degrees north, and because of personal circumstances that are very limiting, I don't think I'll get the chance to go back to Spain at least for a very long time, maybe never. The last time I traveled from there to here (march 2020), Mars Jupiter and Saturn were together in the morning sky, very easily visible just before sunrise the day I left Spain. The next day, in Scotland, I could not see them at all, even though the horizon was cloudless. Stellarium suggested that these three planets would be visible at that place and time. I have seen these three and Venus from here on countless other occasions.
When I was a kid I read somewhere that some astronomers in high latitudes have died without ever seeing Mercury. Is this true?
Not taking into account the weather up here, I wonder if the the ecliptic being less perpendicular to the horizon and therefore having to go through a thicker layer of air, would make it more susceptible to atmospheric refraction to the extent of making Mercury impossible to watch from here. I hope I'm wrong and I get to see Mercury!
Thank you for your time and attention.