“…and now for something completely different…” ISLAND STORIES: THE SHORTEST DAY (DECEMBER 21, 2020) by Mike Djordjevich (USA)

Gone are the long days, frolicking in the late afternoons along the beach. Summer means taking part in admiring nature: the herons, sea gulls, seals, majestic Orca whales and picnics. Yes, all of those are gone.

Replaced with what? Dark, grey, cloudy, foggy skies and rain, rain, rain. The Sun is something which has been hiding from us for several months now, shielding us from its majesty, light and warmth. Its smiling face has disappeared as if swallowed by the dark, dreary winter and gone forever.

It isn’t just the lack of  long walks and warmth; it is the darkness. With the progressing winter, we have been sinking into it ever so slowly, like climbing into a long dark tunnel, with exposed rock and water seeping onto the muddy path, with roots growing and sticking their scary faces out of those wet tunnel walls 

Even all of the above gets worse as it leads to the shortest day of the year, December 21st. A super short day offering no hope for redemption, forgiveness and absolution. On that day, the rain seems to fall slower, the squirrels run across the road more cautiously, the birds don’t fly as high. Everyone and everything seems miserly, as if trying to use up as much of that precious light as they can, trying to squeeze all of their activities, hopes and dreams into that little space of time during the shortest day of the year.

On the next day, December 22, our Island seems to wake up as if aware that there are extra 40-50 seconds of daylight. We grab them greadily and fill them with activity. There is an extra pep in our step.

We know there are more seconds of daylight in every ensuing day and view it as an increasing bank balance which eventually leads to the longest day. But, be patient, the Islanders will share their experiences about that in June. IGAL INSIDER will include it.

by Mike Djordjevich