I don’t know why it’s such a surprise to find it dark as we head out the door in the morning. And, we’re all blown away because sunset is at 4:45 this afternoon which makes it pitch black by 5:00. It happens every year at this time, yet it’s always so shocking. “Can you believe how dark it was at 5:00?” we ask each other as though the whole situation is a serious freak of nature. “I can’t believe how dark it is in the morning! It’s like getting up in the middle of the night.”
To make it worse, we have these notoriously gray days; rainy, windy, dark depressing days. Our beautiful Pacific Northwest falls flat on it’s lovely face in the winter. Yet, apparently not for everyone.
There are those who dwell among us with webbed feet and closets full of REI rain gear. They outfit up and take on the weather like warriors. Those are the aliens spotted combing the beaches in torrential rain storms, hiking through our dense forests dodging falling trees in hurricane force winds, stomping through flooding streams and mud filled trails. I have such respect for those conquerors of the elements. Their smiles beam from under cover of water repellant hoods and hats and carry waterproof cell phones answerable with fingers protruding from fingerless gloves. They are survivors with the right kind of attitude.
We should probably be used to our winter darkness by now and the weather that comes with it. After all, this has been going on for many a life time. It’s just like the Holidays. How is it they are back so soon? Didn’t we just clean up the mess and get everything put away about a month ago? Do we really have to pull it all out and put it up again all ready?
I’m wondering what the rest of you think about us all taking a year sabbatical. We could, as Pacific North westerners, close up shop and leave for the winter, say…to Mexico. There will be those that refuse to leave, of course – the aliens. But the rest of us could just skip a winter. While we’re at it, let’s pass on the holidays, just this once, and not bother with any of the cooking, cleaning, gift buying, entertaining, decorating, ho-ho-ho-ing. Just goodbye gray sky and everything else. Any takers?