Solstice

Every year the summer solstice arrives quicker than I expect. To me, it always feels like the hot days of July are the longest of the summer days. Yet, here we are in June and the solstice arrives tomorrow. I have mixed feelings about this. On one hand, the summer solstice in the northern hemisphere marks the arrival of "true" summer. The day itself will reach toward 15 hours of daylight balanced by just about nine hours of darkness. Temperatures for some months thereafter will stay (mostly) steadily warm, and that golden light that pours into the afternoon will become commonplace. On the other hand, after the next couple days of this maximum sunlight, darkness will begin to slowly creep in, shortening each day until the winter solstice occurs - roughly 185 days from now. I suppose it's because I long for summer while living through the northeastern winters that make the arrival of the summer solstice so bittersweet. I was thinking about this last evening while sitting outside and enjoying the warm weather. The day had reached upwards of ninety degrees, making it almost uncomfortable while walking around earlier in the direct sunlight. But soon after the dinner hour, the sun began to drop and a soft breeze began to blow through the atmosphere. I laid back on a reclining chair, camera in-hand from taking pictures of the kids earlier in the evening. From that vantage point, I watched the yellow summer light cast shadows on the wall in front of me. Off in the distance, I could hear the kids still playing; running around the yard with one another. In that moment, I cursed astronomy, and wished these days could simply last forever.