Monday, January 26, 2009

On watching the sun come back and expose a winter's worth of hidden grime.

It's always fun this time of year watching the sun climb higher and higher in the sky each day. By this time of the year we are a little more than one month past winter solstice and have been gaining an increasing amount of light each day. The daily gains start small, but then gain momentum as we pull away from the winter solstice. By the third week in January one can actually see that the sun is shining higher in the sky and that sunrise and sunset are occurring earlier and later each day.

At my house the sun was high enough in the sky this morning to actually shine through a window that has not seen sun since early November. Note to self: clean that window, right away!

On that note, there is a downside to the sun returning to long forgotten corners of your house. Corners that haven't been illuminated by strong natural light in nearly 3 months now don't seem as clean as one thought they were! As the sun begins to brighten other dark corners of our dwellings in the coming weeks and months "spring" cleaning will become a necessity as the sun shines it's brutal light into what appeared to be clean areas back in December. In my home, while the carpet might have appeared to be clean and not in need of a thorough steaming in December, it certainly is beginning to appear more and more questionable in the higher light.

Good thing the holiday season is in the darkest part of the year as one can entertain company without said company noticing just how cruddy your house really is! Once the full-strength sun of summer rolls around, most entertaining happens outdoors (thank goodness), thus reducing the chances of someone actually seeing how your house looks in the full light of an Alaska summer day.

Unless you have outdoor "facilities" or your summer guests choose to relieve themselves outdoors, one still must keep a "corridor of cleanliness" leading to the closest indoor restroom. The other option, steamclean your home, one dirty bit at a time as the ever climbing sun reveals these "problem areas" to you each day. The inherent problem with spring-cleaning is really in the two words themselves: spring and cleaning. Who in Alaska really wants to spend even a single spring day cleaning house? As soon as Mr. Sun begins coming back to town the urge is not to nest but to leave our dusty dwelling and spend more time outdoors. Who cares if it's cold, it's sunny and your body wants to get out there and soak it up!

Regardless of the sun's cruel, daily exposure of winter's lapsed daily cleaning, I still welcome it back with open arms!

For those of you that like to follow the sun, here is a nice website. It can bring hope to those that suffer from the winter blues. It’s nice to be able to watch the little line creep up towards the summer solstice line. Yeah, there’s the flip side too; watching the little line creep towards the winter solstice line, but after a long and well lived summer, it can be a relief to head into the quieter times of winter. I’ll have more on that in September.

Note: you can look up many other locations worldwide from the Gaisma website. Have fun tracking the sun!

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