Thursday, March 20, 2008

The Vernal Equinox

At some moment today, the sun is directly over the Equator, day and night are of almost equal lengths, and the Equinox occurs. Here in the Northern Hemisphere it's the Vernal or Spring Equinox; south of the Equator, it's the Autumnal.

I was poised to get a picture of the sun rising due east but unfortunately, the weather didn't cooperate. Heavy cloud cover veiled the horizon at the crucial moment. Later, however, the dark clouds began to lift and the sun's rays spread out across the mountains, like a magic wand, ready to bring the world to life.

This second picture was taken a few days ago; the third picture is from the winter solstice. You can see how far the sun has traveled in a quarter of a year. I'm embarrassed to admit that this actually came as a surprise to me, having grown up where I didn't see the sunrise every morning. Of course I'd learned about it in school but hadn't truly grasped how very extensive the sun's back-and forth march was. So now I delight in watching this progress through the year -- and nattering on about it, both in my books and in my blog.

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Pat in east TN said...

When I was younger things like this didn't really matter to me, but nowadays I am more aware of nature and it's changes. It's really amazing and has me 'google-ing' (is that a word?) for more information all the time.

Vicki Lane said...

I expect that the word 'to google' has made it into most dictionaries by now. I know I've used in it my books with nary a whimper from editor or even the always-picky copy editor. And what a great word it is! And what a great tool Google is!