Monday, July 27, 2009

Winter view from a Summer Perspective

Summertime and the paddling is pleasant! View from my deck yesterday afternoon
A few years ago, I commented to a neighbour, during a third rainless week in mid-September (which followed a dry, hot August) that although I was enjoying the glorious weather, such drought always aroused some primeval anxiety -- to which she replied that she had a simple answer: "November, December, January."
I thought of this exchange when I came across this evocative passage in Michael Redhill's Consolation (which I referred to briefly here):
The steepest decline in light always came in the middle of November. There was a point every night now when the sun suddenly plunged below the horizon and dropped the city into a blunt, grayling light. The shock of darkness before five-thirty snapped the cord that connected people to the vain dream of summer, and confirmed that the only way back to daylight now would be to put one's head down and push on through December, January, February. But it was really February--that month of wet lungs and bird-choking fog--that November's
desolation looked forward to. They were bookends, these two months, one buried in a dead year that said
abandon hope, and the other in a fresh one that said what hope?
Of course, here on the West (Wet!) Coast, we don't have the tough winters to get through that Torontonians and other Easterners do, but the combination of wind and rain and short days are hard on the spirit as well. Indeed, such resonance had this passage for me that I've decided to get out in that sunshine -- anxious though it makes me, and our drought is early and long this summer already -- and soak up some Vitamin D! Soon enough we'll be back to this . . .

No comments:

Post a Comment