The Summer Solstice is almost here

And I’m very excited about it!

Why, you may ask? 

Well, let me tell you.  I learned a loooooooong time ago – while reading a Geography textbook belonging to my mother’s only sister who was in middle school (I must’ve been 5 or 6 at the time and yes, I used to read textbooks for fun.  I’ve always been a geek and a nerd, ok?), that the day of my birth was a special day.  The longest day of the year.  The Summer Solstice, they called it.  Sweet, I thought. But then I was left scratching my head.  What the hell do they mean with the longest day of the year? Days last exactly the same, don’t they? Every single one of them?

You see, where I was born, the sun rises at 6 am every day and sets at 6 pm every day, all year round.  Give or take 10 minutes.  I was dumbfounded.  So I kept reading.  And I saw a cool picture that looked pretty much like this one

RASC Calgary Centre – A Complete Guide to
Right Ascension and Declination

And boy, oh boy did I ever get excited! In some countries there were things called seasons! Through the year, days would grow long (or short), peak (ON MY BIRTHDAY) and then grow short (or long) again.   Now, THAT’S cool.

And not only that, but it was different in different parts of the world.  In fact, it was the complete opposite! it would be Summer in the northern hemisphere (brand new word for me) while Winter in the southern one.  And vice versa, exactly six months later.  Same for Spring and Fall. 

The Summer Solstice.  Then the light bulb in my head went on.  I was the Summer Solstice Girl! 

[mind you, I could have very well been the Winter Solstice Girl, but the book was biased toward the Northern hemisphere and I was only 5 or 6 so give me a break]

But there was more.  I also learned that there were places on earth where where daylight is continuous during the spring and summer days.  And that there was something called the midnight sun.   Now, that’s something I have to see, I say to myself.  One day, I’ll go to one of those places and enjoy the Midnight Sun on my birthday.  Then I’ll truly know what the Longest Day of the Year really mean.

Fast forward 30 something years.  It is now that I live in Canada, that I can finally appreciate the Longest Day of the Year.   So, on my birthday, I like to watch the sunset, look at my watch and be amazed at the fact that it is happening at almost 10 pm.   Good times! 

This year is even more special because it marks the 10th anniversary of the very first time I got to enjoy a real Summer Solstice.  

As a side note, that book also had pretty pictures of seasonal landscapes.  That’s when I stumbled upon that proverbial picture of a Canadian Winter Wonderland.  A very serene scene of a cottage, by a lake all covered in snow.  It was love at first sight.  There and then, at that very moment, I decided one day I WOULD live in that country. 

Yeah, I can see myself living there

It took me a while but I made it :)

Still haven’t seen the Midnight Sun, though. Perhaps next year…. Stay tuned for more Summer Solstice Adventures!

And Happy Summer Solstice to you all :)

6 thoughts on “The Summer Solstice is almost here

  1. Jennifer Butler Basile says:

    My daughter was due on the summer solstice, but came a day early. She does seem to be intuitively in tune with changes in seasons, though!

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