By Cil Gregoire Alaska Sci-Fi Queen
Author Masterminds Member
Winter Solstice may go mostly unnoticed down south, but when Atlas shrugs his weary shoulders, readjusting his massive load, Alaskans take notice.
How can one not rejoice in the lengthening of days after groping around in so little daylight for so long? But the transition from winter darkness to a land of midnight summer delight is a gradual one at first and can be a letdown if one is looking for instant relief…..well, the story goes something like this.
Winter Solstice; the shortest day and longest night of the year.
Sunrise: 10:28 am Sunset: 3:29 pm 5hrs. 00min. 57seconds of daylight.
Ms. Positive: Isn’t it wonderful! Winter Solstice is finally here! Starting tomorrow, the days will be getting longer again. Spring is on its way.
Mr. Negative: What? Today is just the first day of winter! Have you looked out the window lately? Do you want to tell me what it is that we’ve been having, if not winter?
Sunrise: 10:28 am Sunset: 3:29 pm 5:01:04 a gain of 7 seconds of daylight over yesterday.
Ms. Positive: Seven seconds more of daylight; the days are finally getting longer. Seven seconds; why that’s seven heartbeats or 28 beats of a Monarch butterfly’s wings.
Mr. Negative: (Mr. Negative takes a look at the wintry scene out the window.) I don’t see any butterflies out there.
Sunrise: 10:28 am Sunset: 3:30 pm 5:01:25 a gain of 21 seconds of daylight.
Ms. Positive: A third of a minute of extra daylight! Why, in three days, that adds up to a whole minute. Spring is definitely on its way!
Mr. Negative: What are you talking about? Spring is five months away!
Sunrise: 10:29 am Sunset: 3:31pm 5:01:59 a gain of 34 seconds of daylight.
Ms. Positive: How wonderful; more than half a minute of daylight! And look, the sun is shining.
Mr. Negative: (Looks at the outdoor thermometer.) It is -12 degrees. Do you call that weak glow through the trees sun? There’s no warm in that sun.
Sunrise: 10:29 am Sunset: 3:32 pm 5:02:47 a gain of 48 seconds of daylight.
Ms. Positive: 48 seconds more daylight! That’s nearly a whole minute. Isn’t that exciting?
Mr. Negative: (Barely glancing up from the newspaper.) Yeah, exciting. How many butterfly wingbeats is that?
Sunrise 10:29am Sunset: 3:33 pm 5:03:49 a gain of 1 minute and 2 seconds.
Ms. Positive: Can you believe it? We gain a whole minute today. Soon we will be enjoying longer days. Things are really starting to happen now.
Mr. Negative: (Glancing out the window.) It’s starting to snow.
Sunrise 10:29am Sunset: 3:34 pm 5:05:04 a gain of 1 minute and 15 seconds.
Ms. Positive: A gain of over a minute of daylight; a minute and a quarter to be exact.
I can already feel my energy levels recharging withe longer days.
Mr. Negative: It’s snowing again. If you feel so energized, you shovel off the deck.
Sunrise: 10:28am Sunset: 3:35 pm 5:06:33 a gain of 1 minute and 28 seconds.
Ms. Positive: Almost a minute and a half more daylight today! Woohoo! Spring is coming!
Mr. Negative: (Looking out at more snow.) I think spring is going to need a GPS to find its way here.
Sunrise: 10:28am Sunset: 3:36 pm 5:08:14 a gain of 1 minute and 41 seconds.
Ms. Positive: A minute and 41 seconds! A minute and 41 seconds!
Mr. Negative: (Mr. Negative just looked out at the cold winter day and shook his head without comment.)
Sunrise: 10:28am Sunset: 3:38 pm 5:10:09 a gain of 1 minute and 54 seconds.
Ms. Positive: Only 6 seconds short of a gain of 2 minutes! Soon we will be waking up to daylight.
Mr. Negative: Let me know when the sun comes up before 10:00.
Sunrise: 10:27 am Sunset: 3:39 pm 5:12:15 a gain of 2 minutes and 6 seconds.
Ms. Positive: Two whole minutes and 6 seconds! I need to order my garden seeds.
Mr. Negative: Garden seeds!? (Mr. Negative looked out at the bright, crisp winter day. Three feet of snow covered the garden. Then at that moment, a ray of golden sunlight broke through the trees filling Mr. Negative’s eyes with spring-promising light. Mr. Negative sighed deeply, turned toward Ms. Positive, and smiled.) I’ll get the Rototiller ready.
Post-Winter Solstice Moods (Latitude 62) was first published with Readers and Writers Book Club: https://readersandwritersbookclub.com.