Sunset is at 3.53 pm. That's a mere 7 hours and 38 minutes of daylight!
Of course it's so overcast and foggy here that the daylight is further curtailed. Realistically it doesn't get properly light until after 9.30 (so I've been told), and nightfall creeps in from as early as 3.20pm.
The blazing sunshine sometimes doesn't warm things up at all!
The decrease in natural light has a marked effect on our psychology. Melatonin increases disturbing our sleep patterns and serotonin is reduced causing lethargy, despondency and generally making us very bad tempered. Well, this the excuse I'm using for the behaviour of a certain cat....Max. He was sitting peacefully on the windowsill, so I bent down to say hello. Normally this would be greeted with a touch of noses and a purr, but today he decided to swipe me around the eye with razor sharp claws! With an angry cat now attached to my face, I grabbed his paw so he couldn't pull it free causing more damage and managed to carefully unhook it from my lower eyelid. We then had a scrap on the lawn which I made a point of winning. Later we made up over a saucer of milk (Max had one too). Winter is getting to us both.
Now I have a swollen eye that makes me look like a Rembrandt portrait.
By midday the sun was quite high, I assume (it was still obscured), and the temperature soared to nearly 1 degree.
It is traditional to light a fire to chase away the darkness. It is meant to be the largest log you can find as to last through the longest night. I was a bit short on massive logs so I instead celebrated, and marked the passing of 'Mr. Stick'.....Mr. Stick is made of stout pine and helps me explain things to those not willing to learn. He has been to hand when I had that run in with car thieves (See previous post 'Men in Black' gone bad...5th April) After years of faithful service in the role of home defence, Mr. Stick met an untimely end after a bizarre fly swatting accident!