The End of the Summer that Never Began

Thursday, September 24, 2020 - 9:13 PM

3 minutes read

How I can use my spare energy in the next phase of lockdown?

Over the summer, a handful of folks thanked me for the live streams that I did throughout the lockdown, saying it was a consistent reprieve from all of the terrible news we experienced throughout the spring of 2020.

I've had to put the streams on ice over the last couple months as I've prudently done in-person workshops to teach about the sky again. In fact, that's where many of the "thank you"s about the live streams came from. I didn't know if I'd be able to do any events or workshops throughout the summer, but with care, disinfectant, small group numbers, and masks, we were able to do a few.

But now, summer is over. The equinox was the other day. I put on a jacket when I go outside now, and I can hear my heater turn on in the morning. 

Around month 4 of lockdown – late June – the calendar told me that it was now summer, but it never felt like it actually began. Like it was always on hold. And doing anything summer-like was sprinkled with guilt, playing with the odds that we wouldn't get infected or infect others.

And now, that summer is over. The one that never began.

Lockdown 2

Here in Québec, our COVID cases are on the rise and we're being told to reduce our social contact with others again. Blend that with reducing daylight, colder temperatures, and an anxiety-inducing presidential election that shouldn't even remotely be a nail-biter (yet somehow still is).

With the last lockdown, there was hope: the days were getting longer and the weather was getting nicer. 

This next lockdown might be harder than the first. 

I have loved ones who suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder, and I worry for them.

How Can I Help?

I can't change the daylight, the weather, or the U.S. election, but I'm lucky: I have some extra reserves of energy and enthusiasm I'd like to put back into good use over the next few months. I'll be starting up live streams again and get back to providing the consistent reprieve that helped people through last spring.

In fact, if it's going to get darker and colder anyways, why not use that as a teaching device? Over the next few months, let's find out why the days are getting shorter and turn that into a months-long observation in our slightly-more-weird-than-usual trip around the Sun.

I hope my enthusiasm in space and astronomy can help get some people through.

Also: I might not be getting a haircut for another 7 months. You can tune in to that fun show too.

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