November 10, 2009

The Days Of Twilight.

As the fall turns slowly into winter, we are experiencing a lack of daylight in Scandinavia. Not only have our days decreased, but the late autumn weather is usually very gray and rainy. The cloud cover can last for days, actually weeks, without us getting even a glimpse of the sun. In fact, I have not seen the sun for almost two weeks now.

The lack of sunshine effects the population of the North. It is considered one of the primary causes of seasonal affective disorder (SAD), a serious form of the "winter blues".
Foreigners from southern Europe, who spend extensive period of time in Scandinavia often say that they can deal with the bad weather and the cold, but the absence of sun and light makes them feel very depressed.

On a happier note, I can say that eventually, one can adapt. To a certain degree. I deal with the dark days days better today than I did about a decade ago. I try to find something positive in the season of the twilight days. Just like the nature and animals enjoy a certain kind of dormancy in the winter period, I guess even we can look at this season as a laid back time, when we get the privilege to rest and enjoy a time of tranquility.

The below image taken around 5PM out of my living room windows this past weekend, compared to the same views taken almost eight hours later, past midnight in June, illustrates very well the difference in light between summer and winter in my part of the world.


Bhavesh Chhatbar said...

Same place, different beauties!

Dagdusheth Ganpati

Elizabeth said...

And because the absence is so long and felt in every cell of our being we soak up the light when it returns.

MsTypo said...

When i saw the title of your post in my blog feeder i thought for a moment this was going to be a TwiHard post. LOL

Nessa said...

I like when you do the comparison photos. It's very interesting.

Blast from the Past

Hilary said...

The change happens so gradually that it's startling to see the difference that happens in just 5 months. I hope you'll be taking full advantage of pseudo light.. the fireplace, candles and the glow from your television set while watching old movies. :)

Stickhorsecowgirls said...

Well, coming from the South as I do, this would be a huge change! Sometimes we feel we almost have too much sunlight! But, not really--I do love the light (it's the heat that gets me!). C

Gal Friday said...

Now, that would have depressing affect on my mood--not to se the sun in two weeks! I hope you'll experience some bright sunshine soon over there. In the meantime, I am sure you try to remain positive, lighting all the candles in your home.
I agree about the lack of light--the cold and harsh weather I can deal with, but it is the darkness that drains my spirit. It makes me feel tired and ready for bed--by 7:00 in the winter...*sigh*

steviewren said...

Now that we aren't on daylight savings time, it gets dark at 5pm here too. The sun rises sometime around 6am. Not today though....we are getting rain from Tropical Storm Ida coming up to us from the Gulf of Mexico. There has been a steady downpour since last evening.

Brian Miller said...

both striking...i am working with someone now who has seasonal depression, so i can understand...beautiful pics and congrats on the POTW. smiles.

G said...

Your pictures depict it so well, this lack of sun. It seems quite mysterious, and I can imagine it would take some getting used to. The return of the sun must feel wonderful in the spring.

Keith said...

Beautiful photos. I find it fascinating that this happens. I do wonder how I would react to it. How it would affect me if I had to deal with this. I work at night so I'm usually out of at night instead of during the daytime. I still love having the sun out there.

♥Mimi♥ said...

I suffer from SADD and have found that keeping myself busy, really busy, has been the key for my well being - that and lots of light bulbs lit in every room I am in at the time. Sadly, I cannot be one who conserves energy in the wintertime. I need light - lots of it.

I also do my best to create an atmosphere of comfort with scented candles and cozy blankets and pillows and good music.

United Studies said...

It was hard for me to adjust to the Danish winter, at first, but I quickly found out why Danes love their candles. It makes the rooms so cozy and hyggelig. :-)

We our experiencing our dark period here now, and once the sun sets I am ready to hibernate. :-)

Chris Stovell said...

Sounds like West Wales at the moment! No, I know we do have more daylight but the weather has been so grey and miserable it feels as if the sun has disappeared forver.

Claus said...

I wonder how long I could handle it without sunlight? Grey days are a bit depressing for me, and I'm sure they are not even closer to what you experience up, up north. But you are right: humans are beings of customs, and surely they can adapt to situations. Is the candle business in Scandinavia a good one? I think with all the darkness of the winter months, and the need of a cozy and warm environment, candles must be treasured items.
Hope your day is less grey!

Helen McGinn said...

Oh yes, it can be grey all day sometimes over here. recently though, we've had the brightest, blue skies, col, cold weather and frost and it all disappears suddenly, come 5pm. It's very strange but lovely. xx

Helen McGinn said...

Thank you so much for the birthday wishes. xx

Stacey J. Warner said...

I grew up in Seattle and it always feels like 5pm without the sun shining through.

Taking vitamin D helps...

much love

sprinkles said...

I don't have SADD but I do miss the sun in the winter. The past week and a half or so have actually been pretty nice here with the exception of the wind. I wish the whole winter would stay this way. It won't though. :(

Sandi McBride said...

This is the time when people would normally be hibernating...the light boxes work wonders, I'm sister has one...luckily I have no need of one.

Unknown said...

beautiful photos. our sun sets here in Michigan around 5:20 pm now. it actually makes for a long night. during the summer it is light out til around 9:30, 10:00. we do that silly day light savings time thingy here. why I do not know!!

Unknown said...

This is a most fascinating collection of Bloggers here, and I enjoyed reading their observations about light and the soul. Yes, it is quite a challenge. I had a tough time in the Mid-Western U.S. where it was overcast so many months. But out here in Arizona I am surrounded by beautiful mountains and blue sky! It does the mind and body wonders. I admire how you always look for the positives in any situation. This speaks so highly of you! :)

Beep said...

It looks so beautiful to me, but then again I have a photosensitive form of a serious illness, was born in the middle of the Mojave Desert, and now live in a place which is slowly getting hotter and drier! I lust after things like ice skating (I wanted to learn before it became too dangerous for me but I had to be content with roller skates!) and ice sculptures and sparkling snow and snow queens and ice-blue fjords and the moon and the stars and I could go out ANY time I wanted to because it wouldn't be too hot to cover myself from the UV and there wouldn't be any UV anyway! Bwahaha! Scandinavia needs to start marketing winter tourism to photosensitive lupus patients ;) I want to walk around outside for hours without getting sick, even if I would need snowshoes to do it.

Zuzana said...

so right you are.;) Thank you for your visit.;)

yes, we do; you if anyone will understand this post considering you live in Denmark.;)xo

I had to look up the term Twihard on the net, I had no idea what it meant.;) Hehe.;) No, I am not obsessed with the *Twilight* show (books, movies), although they sure seem interesting to me. xo

thank you, I am happy to hear that.;) xo

yes, that is exactly it, the changes even in the past 3 months are out of this world. Yes, I am definitely looking forward to the dark days in front off the fireplace with Batcat and some good movies.;) xo

please do enjoy the light even for me.;) xo

ah yes, now it is almost two weeks without a sun and this is quiet normal here. November is by far the darkest month.;) xo

I have heard of Ida. Hope it will soon pass so you can get the sun back.;) xo

thank you so much and thank you for the best wishes.;)

yes, you are so right, it is mysterious in a way. And absolutely yes, the return of the sun in spring is a celebrated event.;) xo

how do you cope with working in the night, I simply couldn't do that. Always so glad when you stop by.;)

you are so right, the light is vital. I too light many candles and try to create a cosy atmosphere.;) xo

ah yes, that famous danish expression - *hyggelig*. Impossible to explain to anyone who has not lived here, it has to be experienced.;) xo

welcome! And I think I know what you mean about the weather, it has been awful here without sun for 11 days now and is likely to continue for another week.
Thank you for stopping by.;)

always a kind comment from you.;) Yes, candles are consumed by a handful here each day. I think candle business must be booming here in the winter.;)xo

ah, I hope your weather will come our way. But I do not think so as we have had winds from the east for the last 2 weeks, a very unusual trend.;) xo

maybe I should start taking vitamin D, that is a good suggestion.;) xo

I am completely with you on that one. If the winter was sunny here, I could take the cold for months.;) xo

yes, I have heard that the light therapy is very beneficial. I might look into it actually.;) xo

yes, that is similar to here, except we might have a few hours more light in the summer and less in the winter.;) We too do the light savings time as well.;) xo

your weather is sounds like a dream weather to me. Thank you for your always kind words.;)

what a lovely way of looking at it.;) Yes, perhaps Scandinavians shoudl take advantage of that fact.
I am so sorry to hear about your health concerns, I am sure it can not be easy living with this disease... xo

Maria said...

All the seasons have their charm - even dark days!

Unknown said...

love twilight. Both the movie and sky. hihii.Both romantic too.

julochka said...

i try not to let it depress me, but i have to admit november is often the worst. my first november in DK, the sun never shined once and it looks like this one is on track for that too. but i'm trying to think of it as "yesvember" this year, instead of NOvember. :-) and embracing the candles and fireplace. it helps a bit.

Zuzana said...

that is very true my dear friend.;) xo

romantic it is indeed, especially if the skies are clear and the moon is full.;)

I love the term yesvember! Can you just believe the weather we are having?? This is the worst November by far on record. Today it feels lieke the end of the world. I hope the sun will come out tomorrow finally;)

Lynne said...

My husband found the Swedish winter just too much.