Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Longest night of the year

Pardon the rewording of the Bruce Cockburn song, but if you live in the north, today is Hump Day. This is as bad as it gets when it comes to lack of light if you live in Iqaluit. We're at 64 degrees north, so we don't get complete darkness. From now on, each day will give a few more minutes of daylight, as oppose to losing it. If you’re above the Arctic Circle, you’re now half way through the night. In a few days or weeks, you’ll see the sun again.

In Iqaluit the sun rises at 9:22 a.m. and sets at 1:43 p.m. today. You can add about another hour on either side of it being light out, but the sun is beneath the horizon. So you’re averaging about 5-6 hours of daylight right now. Makes you appreciate the “shorter” days in St. John’s a bit more, hmmmm?

I’ve been surprised how well I’ve been handling it. There was a worry when I first got here that I wouldn’t be able to handle that much darkness. I was lucky that The Express was a job that got me out of the office a lot, so I got plenty of sunshine. I was wondering whether or not I’d get SAD (Seasonal Affected Disorder). As I said, it hasn't happpened. I wonder if it's balanced out by the fact that it tends to be sunny a lot in Iqaluit and cloudy a lot in Newfoundland. We might have fewer daylight hours, but we get more sunshine than St. John's. Maybe.

We’re hardly out of the dark yet (no woods to get out of this far above the treeline). The worst of the cold and snow have yet to hit. And it’s only been about a month or so of real, substantial darkness. Ask me how I’m doing at the end of February.

Still, I’ll enjoy the psychological boost that comes with knowing for the next six months, the days only get longer.

Last 5 on iPod
1. Longest night of the year - Bruce Cockburn (Anything, Anytime, Anywhere)
2. On every street - Dire Straits (The Very Best of...)
3. Sonny's dream - The Wonderful Grand Band (Living in a Fog)
4. Cry, baby, cry - The Beatles (The White Album)
5. Hold on my heart - Genesis (Platinum Collection)

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