As with many things during this time, I’m a little late to the party. I usually like to comment on important events like the autumnal equinox on the date itself, but time got away from me, so here we are. A day late and a dollar short, as my granny used to say.
The actual autumnal equinox occurred on Tuesday, September 22 at 6:30am PDT. This is the moment in time when the sun crosses the celestial equator and day and night is roughly the same in duration.
Today, Wednesday, September 23, the length of day was twelve hours and two minutes, so that’s still pretty close to 50/50. Still something to celebrate. The sun came up, the sun went down, the world itself went round and round.
I’m taking that for the win.
The Autumnal Equinox is followed by the Winter Solstice, the shortest day and longest night. The Winter Solstice this year falls on December 21, 2020
There’s a lot of fear and anxiety in the world today. It feels like the world might stop spinning. We joke about the Zombie Apocalypse. The appearance of aliens. The wait for another shoe to fall.
To date, here in the Pacific Northwest, we’ve had pandemic, fire, smoke, murder hornets, riots, a certain level of chaos, and yet . . . we manage. We survive. For that is what people do. As a group. We endure.
Fall is my favorite season. I love cold clear days, colder nights. At the end of summer, I search for the first signs that the leaves in the trees are starting to change.
Here in Snoqualmie Valley, it was hard to see the trees for the smoke for what felt like an eternity, but when the smoke did clear, lo and behold, the yellows and oranges burst from the trees. Colors of remembrance, of memory. A time to give thanks for blessings. For they are there, if we look for them. We persevere.
Fall symbolizes a start to looking in, as we do during the colder months here in the Northern Hemisphere. Reflection on the year past, plans for the year next. For it will come, the next year. Time will move inexorably forward. The earth will tilt again.
Fall is a time set apart.
It’s fine to be a homebody in the fall. No one expects you to travel or go to parties, fall is for gathering the crops and building the stores to get us through the dark days.
For writing words down and finding the next story to tell.
For some, all the days feel dark. But as fall colors paint the trees in glory and the skies clear from the fires and the earth tilts away from the sun, as it has done for millennia, I encourage everyone to keep the faith. For the world is a beautiful place.
We’re all in this together.
Wondering how I think about winter? Read my post from last winter by clicking the link here.
Elena Taylor is the author of All We Buried, available now in print, e-book, and audio book format at all your favorite on-line retailers. And don’t forget many independent bookstores can order books for you and have them shipped to your home or for curbside pickup.
For more information on All We Buried, click on the link here to visit the home page.
Header Photo by claude05alleva on Pixabay.
Sun Photo by Alexas_Fotos on Pixabay.
Hornet Photo by Carola68 on Pixabay.