Winter Solstice 2016

On the eve of the shortest day of the year, I’d like to extend my sincerest wishes for a happy holiday (whatever you celebrate) and a healthy, prosperous new year. Personally, while I grew up celebrating Christmas, living in Sweden makes one acutely aware of daylight hours, for good and ill. Even with the now-ubiquitous extension of electricity to include outdoor as well as indoor lighting, there is a certain inevitable sobriety to a sun that doesn’t rise until 8:44 and sets as early as 2:48. (I can’t imagine how I’d fare up in Norrland!)

Truth be told, this is the first new year that I’m actively dreading. Sometimes I’ve been reluctant about the holiday–uncomfortable with the passing of time that the occasion so very obviously marks–and other times I’ve been excited. But this year I’m actively resisting 2017. I’ll mark all my usual traditions (cheap champagne and The Big Lebowski), and be grateful that I came out of 2016 (what a year!) relatively unscathed, but when the calendar rolls over there won’t be any relief, excitement, or anticipation. Just the grim realization that we have work to do.

But I won’t be a Debbie Downer; there is much to celebrate and remember.

“The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends towards justice.”

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