In early January, I start checking the time of sunrise and sunset every day, taking pleasure in each additional minute of daylight (and usually declaring to multiple people, multiple times a week, "Tomorrow will be two minutes and eight seconds longer!" or "We've gained six more minutes of daylight since Monday!"). I'm also fond of telling my friends in Boston and New York that the sun sets in Cha-Cha City 20-30 minutes later, year round. It's a way of getting through.
But as soon as we pass the summer solstice, I stop checking. And when it's fully dark by 9 p.m. I start noting morosely that it's all downhill from there. Throughout the early fall I grumble, taking the shortening days--every single one of them--very personally. Winter's coming.
Now that we've set the clocks back, though, I'm okay with it. It's dark early and it's dark long, and it's going to get worse before it gets better. I'm grateful for the warm, sunny days we'll still get through the end of this month, and I'm grateful for weekend days spent outside, when the dark comes on more slowly. We drink cider and whiskey and red wine, eat stews and nuts and root vegetables, and we light fires in the fireplace and have people over. I'll see my college friends at the football game this weekend, family for Thanksgiving the week after that, and the end of the semester is in sight.
It'll be okay, for a while. But talk to me again in February.