20 November, 2009

How dark is it really?

I know I've mentioned the weather several times, but someone in DC asked the other day to describe it better.  DC is on the same latitude as southern Italy; Stockholm lines up with Alaska, so its understandably hard to picture the weather. In a word, its bearable.

The Stockholm sky looked disturbing like the apocalyptic sky in the 2012 billboard today.

We aren't in San Diego, thats for sure.  But its not actually *that* cold despite that they hosed down the park in front of Astrid Lindgren's apartment to make an ice rink.  It has snowed big once, but didn't stick. On average, the days have been in the mid-40s, and warmer when it rains...you just need a lighter jacket.  But there have been a lot of rainy days lately, which is extremely depressing.

Granted it gets light outside, but there are stretches where you don't see the sun at all. Its just gray clouds. I know that its up there, somewhere, but the cloud cover is so thick, that some days they break up just enough to see some rays, only to thicken back up again in 10 minutes.  Then there are some mornings when the sun is up and shining and gorgeous, like this past Wednesday, when I woke up at 8am and jumped around like it was my birthday because there was actual sun out. Seriously, most productive morning of the week.

And the hours of sun-potential are waning.  It was fine until Halloween, when daylight savings kicked in. The days have gotten progressively shorter, and now at mid-November, on most days, the sun starts to set around 3:15ish or so.  Just after 4pm (so, uh, right now) its night-time-dark outside.  Its weird to walk down the street about 4pm, when its bustling with people and cars, but it could be midnight based on the sky.

So we have almost 5 weeks of shortening days, until the solstice on December 21. The day Stu's mom arrives for the holidays (though I've heard they light this town up with so many Christmas lights, you don't notice the dark as much.) Then about 5 more weeks until we're back to this point, dark by 4.

 A crack of blue sky and sun about 1pm this afternoon. Enjoy it while you can.

I'll survive, but I see why everyone complains. And it makes you appreciate the daylight and sun that much more. We live right next to the Stockholm Observatory, and that hill is the best place to stand on and absorb sun when you get that 10-minute glimpse of it.  In our quest to manufacture some vitamin D, Stu & I manage to look like idiots to people walking by. We both unbutton our coats and lift up our shirts in the cold to expose our bellies to the sun. We figure the it gets more surface area that way...like built-in solar panels.

1 comment:

  1. When it gets too cold to lift up your shirts, take a Vit D supplement. Shall I put that on the list od things to bring?