Friday, June 21, 2013

Summer Solstice 2013

Today is considered the first day of summer
in the northern hemisphere. 
A couple of articles online,
notably this link for National Geographic and this one for the Washington Post,
tell us everything we might want to know about the summer solstice,
including the tilt of the earth, the zenith of the sun,
and the cultural implications of the summer solstice for neo-pagans and farmers.
That's a lot of information.

The bit of information I enjoyed the most was from a table 
on the Washington Post web site that gave the total hours of sunshine
for some of the major cities in the world.
At the solstice, the sunny hours increase as one goes north.
At the North Pole, the sun shines for 24 hours--
that would be a fabulous sight. 
I'm not sure what it would do to one's circadian rhythms though.

Sunshine and Brilliant Blue Sky
photo by A. K. Entingh, 

Stockholm will have  21 hours and 42 minutes of daylight.
Here in the Shire, we should have a little less than 16 hours of daylight,
judging from the estimate for Washington, DC's 15 hours and 58 minutes.
The city in the table with the least daylight today?
That is Hong Kong with 14 hours and 20 minutes.

Whether you call this Summer Solstice, first day of summer,
or Midsummer, any time the sun shines longer
is a good day in my book.

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