Midwinter is called “sydäntalvi” (heartwinter) here in Finland. The heart of the winter is cold and dark. Nature goes to rest.
Where we live, slightly above the polar circle, we do don’t have the full version of polar night, but the shortest days of the year are about two and half hours long. During these days, the sun rises just and just above the horizon, but we wont see it as it is behind the hills. The red sky of the morning blends to the red sky of the evening. There is a bit of something light-like between.
Experiencing sunrise and sunset during one rather short walk.
Yes, we often feel tired during this darkness. But there is nothing wrong with the darkness: it is the modern society that does not respect the seasons. The natural rhythm would be to sleep a lot during these “heartwinter days”, to go to the saving mode and collect strength for the coming spring. The bears know exactly what to do, they crawl to their nest and sleep until the light is back.
So, there is some beauty and comfort also in the dark winter days, if one has a chance to take it slowly and enjoy the peace and quiet. A walk in the darkness is a relaxing experience. The senses are not overloaded as there is not much to see or hear, just the moon and the snow cover.
Sometimes, temperatures below -30 Celcius encourage semi-bear-behavior: crawling under a blanket with a warm cup of tea.
In January the days start to gain length. According to an old Finnish saying, today, the 6th January, the day is longer by a cockerel step. We are on our way towards the light again.
Sunlight reaches the tree tops at midday, for a moment.
in Teeriniemi, 6th January, 2017
Anthony & Päivi