After mid-winter darkness, March seems to be full of light. Sun shines over the snow-covered landscape. Days feel long. It is time of Equinox.
This spring, around the whole world, people are fighting against a disease or getting prepared to fight it. Lapland is turning quiet, travelers have gone home.
We live in a remote farm, always rather isolated. Far from everyone else. Doing daily duties here seems suddenly so very normal, compared to many other peoples´lives. But also here, in the middle of nowhere, we are reading the news with heavy hearts.
In the background, Mother Nature carries on. Nature does what is does every year. Spring is on it’s way.
There are eight seasons in Lapland. This second season of the year around Equinox is called “hankikantokevät”, the crusty snow spring. Days are warm, but nights are cold. During the day, the snow surface melts and settles a bit and freezes over night . This forms the crusty surface of snow that in the morning carries a skier like a magic.
Also animals enjoy the sunshine on their fur. Alma and Maude are having breakfast together, sharing a small pile of hay. Brightness of the morning light in March is simply amazing.
Lovely weather also tempts the chicken out of their little warm log house. Their movements are thought regulated every year this time: in Finland during the wild birds’ spring migration chicken outdoor in pen where they cannot be in contact with wild birds. This has been the practice since the bird flu epidemic a few years ago.
No actual migrating migrating birds have not yet here, but they are expected to start arriving soon. Redpolls are circulating from place to place though and there are many of them.
Spring migration is a big event for us who live in the middle of wilderness. It is an emotional moment when the first birds start appearing. Those little friends make so long journeys and we worry about them terribly when they leave again in the autumn.
It is not just the daylight that is special about time of Equinox. Also the nigh sky is rather special.
The Equinox is the time the Earth and it’s magnetic field lie sideways on in the solar wind, this is the time it can most effectively create spectacular northern lights. Equinoxes are the times to see the northern lights at their best, though no night ever has a guarantee. And this equinox has not been a disappointment even though we are in the solar minimum. Up here the northern lights still are a regular feature of our night sky.
Plant Earth keeps going round the sun. Seasons change. Mother Nature carries on.
Päivi & Anthony
In Teeriniemi, 21st March 2020