Merry Solstice

We now live on the 57th parallel north in Aberdeen. This is about the same level as Juneau, Alaska. If you’ve ever lived in the northern climes, you know that sunlight is a rare commodity. And so it is that we are in a state of greater anticipation about the Winter Solstice tomorrow, December 21, than we are about Christmas. While Christmas does signify the True Light- Jesus – coming into the world, we are settling for far, far less in our celebrations: the promise of more good old fashioned daylight.

We have a row of tall pines just to the south of our flat and thankfully a window that faces the same direction. So on a sunny day like today, the sun nudges up behind the trees but never gets above them. Rather it just skims the tops as the day passes, in a low teasing arc, with straight-in-your-eyes brightness then drops back down behind them. 

 

High noon sunshine

High noon sunshine from our flat

So on December 21, this little charade called daytime will be at its shortest: sunrise 8:47am, sunset 3:27pm. Soon ‘normal’ days will return (stay tuned for the ‘never gets dark’ summertime blog entry!)       We are doing well with the alleged emotional toll of not having much light. I think we have only gained about 50 pounds between us and we want to sleep all the time; so what’s not to like?

And of course the city takes full advantage of extended darkness by leaving the Christimas lights on downtown 24 hours a day. (Does every place do this?) They really do try to brighten up the place especially since most of the buildings are gray granite.

IMG_0121

The main street of Aberdeen (at 5:30am when I catch the bus)

The main street of Aberdeen (at 5:30am when I catch the bus)

We wish we could take full advantage of all this darkness and chase the aurora and catch the shooting stars of last weekends Geminid meteor shower but we didn’t quite have the bandwith to manage it right now. Did anyone happen to ‘catch’ some falling stars?

 

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