The equinox slid past without my even noticing. I’m still waiting for summer to arrive. Oh, we had a few days here and there where it got up into the 80s midday, but on my morning walks I almost always wore a jacket and boots. Not that they were strictly necessary — in years past I’ve gone in shorts and T-shirt at the same temperatures or even colder, but somehow last winter the chill got right into my bones and never left. Now here it is, raining again, with the days already getting noticeably shorter. I wish they’d send some of that global warming this way.
Only kidding, of course. This past year was just an eddy in the general current of warming trends, I’m sure. Old timers on the island say that back when they were kids, they used to skate on Gazzam Lake every year. I don’t think that lake has frozen over anytime in recent memory.
Up here north of the 47th parallel, the sun dips noticeably southward on its trip across the sky. In the summer, it appears to rise in the Northeast, swings down in a great smile to the south and then back up to where it sets in the Northwest — providing daylight from about 4:30 AM to 10 PM. As we march towards winter, the whole show just moves south — which means that less of each end of that great arc is visible over the horizon. By the winter solstice, the sun will rise and set in the south, with a small movement from east to west that provides daylight from about 9 AM to 4:30 PM. Those of you who live even further north can say “pshaw!” but having lived most of my life a good ten or twenty degrees further south, I notice these things.
The spiders notice. More and more of them are showing up in the house, looking for warmer places to build. These are the large Hobo spiders — though not poisonous, they will bite, and the bites can get pretty nasty looking. My wife screamed this morning when she found a huge one in the kitchen sink. I killed it without too much of a struggle, but if they get much bigger I’ll have to use a shotgun.