Today marks the solstice. The weather reader told me today will be the shortest day. In fact, today will be some nanoseconds over 24 hours, just like yesterday.
Yes, you in the back? Uh hum. Yes. Oh, the hours of daylight are the shortest of the year. I see. The almanac indicates we will have 9 hours and 21 minutes of sun today at the old homestead, cloud cover not withstanding. So for me, today does make the “shortest day” of sun and the first day of winter.
Like most things, this is all a matter of perspective.
If you lived at 40 degrees of latitude south instead of north, today would be the first day of summer and the longest in terms of the hours between sunrise and sunset. Of course, most of the 40th degree latitude south crosses ocean, except for a couple of islands of Tasmania and the tip of South America, so not many folks get to enjoy the height of summer in those regions. By most mariner accounts, the oceans are fierce and rough in the “roaring forties”.
What does all of this mean? Not much. This big blue ball we call home continues to spin on its tilted axis as it rotates around the sun. The weather will be seasonably warm today and cold over the weekend. It may snow. Winter is not coming, it is here. Tomorrow we can look forward to more minutes of sunlight as the days march forward to another spring.