Sunday, November 15, 2009

Light, let there be.

I need to rave on a bit about how much I am enjoying the light levels here in Saskatchewan. My own particular very bossy suprachiasmatic nucleus loves being "home" again. Let me try to explain. This first picture is my view of the sky, looking west, about 5:15 PM. We don't change the clock in Sask. That's just point 1.

Where I live is situated 1850 feet above sea level. It's like living at the top of a very very large hill. When the sun comes up, or goes down, the light changes ever so gradually. There is nothing abrupt about this process the way it is at sea level. The sky takes a good half hour or longer to brighten or dim, both before and after the sun has come or gone. I think this gradated dimming/brightening, the slowness of it, the gentleness of it, the non-abruptness of it, is crucial - at least to me. I think it might be why the big fake sun-lamp stopped working for me. My particular suprachiasmatic nucleus took all this for granted the first 33 years of its existence. Then for the next 26 years or so, it had to put up with sudden light changes. They really are more abrupt when there are mountains and sea level blocking light as my brain had become accustomed to it, a brain used to a sky that faded or brightened slowly, so slowly, from very dark to very, very bright. And big. Huge. Dome. Sky. Sky that actually dips down on all sides below the horizon line, letting the sun smoothly illuminate it even when it isn't directly visible. How cool is that? This second picture was take at around 6 PM! There is still enough light in the sky to take a picture without any fancy equipment, just a handheld camera. Not much, but just enough.

Halfway through November, and no SAD. Not one bit of it. Just greater and greater decompression noted each passing week.

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